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Quantum Physics Working at the Macroscopic Scale

Article by Dr. Olivier Alirol, Resonance Science Foundation Research Scientist

Quantum physics is the general term for a set of physical approaches born in the 20th century which, like the theory of relativity, marks a break with what is now called classical physics. Thus, the so-called “quantum theory” describes the often non-intuitive behaviors of atoms, photons and other particles – something that classical physics could not do.

Today, we know how to produce, using experimental optic methods, twin photon pairs whose properties are perfectly described by quantum physics. Although composed of two particles, these objects must be considered as a whole, from the moment photons are created to the moment they are detected. This quantum phenomenon is fundamental for example in quantum optics because classical physics does not allow any correlation. It is therefore necessary to deeply understand not only their origin, but above all which external parameters could...

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An Approach to Manipulate Small Objects with Light

Article by Dr. Olivier Alirol, Resonance Science Foundation Research Scientist

Suspected from the outset Kepler’s observations of comet tails, the fact that light exerts forces on matter, and therefore on objects is now well established. Thanks to the work of Arthur Ashkin among many others, optical traps are now a reality. Using laser beams optical levitation of microspheres is used nowadays in many applications from stretching DNA to nanotechnology, spectroscopy, stochastic thermodynamics and critical Casimir forces.

Structuring light makes optical manipulation techniques possible, like using the Spatial Light Modulators (SLMs) to produce holographic optical traps (HOTs). These Spatial Light Modulators are liquid crystal technology with a fast and precise control of the beam shape used to control multiple particles in 2D and 3D configurations.

Previously holographic traps were limited to particular classes of light (scalar light), so it is very exciting that we can reveal a...

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From the Planck Constant to the Kilogram

Article by Dr. Olivier Alirol, RSF Research Scientist

The year 2018 is historic for the world of measurement. It will mark the redefinition of the International System (SI), and more particularly of four of its units: the kilogram, the ampere, the kelvin and the mole. In November 2018, the 26th General Conference on Weights and Measures (CGPM) will vote on the new definitions of these units. These should be established on the basis of fundamental physical constants. LNE, the French metrology pilot, is actively contributing to the redesign of SI, in particular through the redefinitions of the kilogram, ampere and kelvin.

The International System of Units (SI) consists of a set of internationally recognized basic units controlled by the Comité International des Poids et Mesures (CIPM).

Today, the IS has 7 units that can be found in all aspects of our daily lives, let alone in the industry:

  • Kilogram (Planck Constant, speed of light, time)
  • Meter (time and speed of light)
  • Second...
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A Two Layers Graphene Superconductor Material

Article by Dr. Olivier Alirol, Physicist, Resonance Science Foundation Research Scientist

Scientists have discovered that a two graphene layers can conduct electrons showing superconductivity if the two hexagonal nets are twisted against each other at a 1.1 degree angle. This finding could lead to room-temperature superconductors, a hypothetical material exhibiting superconductivity at temperatures above 0 °C (273.15 K). Most superconductors work only at temperatures close to absolute zero. Even ‘high-temperature’ superconductors are working in reality at  −140 ºC. A material that displayed the property at room temperature — eliminating the need for expensive cooling — could revolutionize energy transmission, medical scanners and transport.

Increasing the temperature at which superconductivity occurs could have phenomenal technological applications

A current that could flow forever without losing any energy means transmission of power...

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Is Our Solar System Heating Up?

Article by Dr. Olivier Alirol, Resonance Science Foundation Research Scientist

The consequences of human activity on our environment has been proven and sadly can be observed on a daily basis. Even the Chinese government is taking action to face the ongoing problematic smog spread all across Chinese Cities. They recently decided drastic measures closing up to 40% of their factories [1]. One of the problems we are all facing is global warning. New data from NASA experts resulting from satellite photography shows that the Greenland ice sheets are melting two times faster than previously expected. However, in a recent paper published last September, scientists exposed new results showing a much lower impact of CO2 on climate change [2]. They reviewed their model and announced their previous estimation for the impact of CO2 was 50% overestimated meaning the emission budget is now 2 to 3x higher than announced making Paris agreement more feasible.

Of course releasing...

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