A New Form of Matter?
Three photons stick together to create a new form of light
The individual photons that make up a beam of light normally do not interact, but a team of researchers have clumped three together for the first time, creating a new form of light.
Scientists create never-before-seen form of matter
"What we have done is create a special type of medium in which photons interact with each other so strongly that they begin to act as though they have mass, and they bind together to form molecules."
Which is it light or matter? Why three photons instead of the two photon photonic molecule from their first experiment? Let’s see if we can find out more.
"Using extremely weak laser pulses, they then fired single photons into the cloud of atoms."
Really? What laser did they use because all of the spec sheets I've read say a pulse is more than one photon. A stream of photons, etc.
"... energy excites atoms along its path, causing the photon to slow ..."
How does one excite a photon with cold atoms of rubidium? How does this cause slowing down? How is "energy", an ability to do work, passed from one atom to the next?
"When the photon exits the medium, its identity is preserved," Lukin said. "It's the same effect we see with refraction of light in a water glass. The light enters the water, it hands off part of its energy to the medium, and inside it exists as light and matter coupled together, but when it exits, it's still light."
What , the photon had an ID card? What are they talking about? How is this like refraction if it is NOT refraction? How does light couple with matter, and then de-couple? How does one SLOW light?
"When Lukin and colleagues fired two photons into the cloud, they were surprised to see them exit together, as a single molecule."
Let's see what THEY saw. Where's the picture of two conjugating photons?
"An effect called a Rydberg blockade, Lukin said, which states that when an atom is excited, nearby atoms cannot be excited to the same degree.
"The result, he said, is that the two photons push and pull each other through the cloud as their energy is handed off from one atom to the next.
"That makes these two photons behave like a molecule, and when they exit the medium they're much more likely to do so together than as single photons."
So, what is the mechanism of push and pull here? Oh, I see, they behave like a molecule.
A few years ago I read through all the reviews and technical data sheets on single photon emitters and detectors. There were NO such SINGLE photon devices including the DOT traps..
Here is a review and I call your attention to this case in point:
"For the purposes of this review, we adopt the following operational definition of a single-photon state: given a detector that can determine the number of incident photons (in some finite-width frequency range) with 100% accuracy, a single-photon state is an excitation of the electromagnetic field (localized to some degree in both space and time) such that the detector measures exactly one photon for each incident state. Put another way, a single-photon state is one for which the photon-number statistics have a mean value of one photon and a variance of zero. In addition, since the results of quantum measurements may depend on the measurement procedure and apparatus, the physics of the measurement process itself must also be considered.13 Single-photon detectors typically work by sensing an electrical signal that results from the absorption of a photon."
It all boils down to measuring. AND as scientists, we do not measure.
What’s this about the speed of photons being slowed down. NONSENSE! This is measuring angle of refraction and calculating speed. Light does not slow down or speed up. Wavelengths change as a result of matter the light "travels" through changing the wavelength of that "signal.".
This is no different than Fizzeu's or any of the other methods of measuring light speed. They measure angles and calculate light speed.
There is no single photon detection going on, they are measuring current and calculating numbers of photons, wave packets, photon streams, Quantum Confinement Effects, photon states, sequence of single photons, sub-Poisson statistics, probability distribution and average number of photons.
Read the technical data sheets that manufacturers provide and see (as from the review above) "we consider deterministic single-photon sources based on color centers,103–105 quantum dots (QDs),106–108 single atoms,109 single ions,110 single molecules,111 and atomic ensembles,112 all of which can to some degree emit single photons “on-demand.”"
They are claiming a new form of MATTER. They say light interacts with matter and we have photonic molecules, a new kind of matter.
BUT when you read further you see that they really mean they ACT like a molecule. OTOH, molecules are generally considered to be comprised of atoms, not sub atomic particles:
molecule: "a group of atoms bonded together, representing the smallest fundamental unit of a chemical compound that can take part in a chemical reaction."
AND they also say that photons don't NORMALLY interact, so this is a new paradigm. New matter, massless particles gaining mass, and sub atomic particles forming a new kind of matter.
So what evil concoction have they brewed? A semi-matter chimera hybrid molecule of light-matter? These people are playing loose and fast with words. They are saying one thing and meaning another, but we know what they mean (nudge, nudge, wink, wink).