Beam Me Up? Teleporting Real, Even If Trekkie Transport Isn’t

Written by on August 3, 2015 in Nature, Sci-Tech, Science, Technology with 4 Comments

By Geoff Brumfiel | NPRTeleportation-34453539_m-680x380

“I have a hard time saying this with a straight face, but I will: You can teleport a single atom from one place to another,” says Chris Monroe, a biophysicist at the University of Maryland.

His lab's setup in a university basement looks nothing like the slick transporters that rearrange atoms and send them someplace else on Star Trek. Instead, a couple million dollars' worth of lasers, mirrors and lenses lay sprawled across a 20-foot table.

“What they do in the TV show is, they send the atoms over a long distance,” says David Hucul, who recently got his Ph.D. with Monroe. “But, really — if you could build anything, you wouldn't send the atoms.”

That's because atoms are big and heavy, and you don't really need them, he explains. The laws of physics say that any atom of carbon is identical to any other atom of carbon. Oxygen, hydrogen and so on: They're all perfect atomic clones.

“The thing that makes us unique is the states of those atoms,” Hucul says. “So you'd really send the information — the state of the atom.”

The particular arrangement of an atom's electrons, or protons, or neutrons is what makes it special. Now, it's not quite as simple as looking at how everything is placed inside the atom. The laws of quantum mechanics say that “measuring” an atom's information will destroy it.

Instead, researchers have to use this complex system of lasers to transpose some of that information from one atom to another.

In a tiny, steel chamber, they trap one single atom of the element barium. And there's an identical chamber on the other side with another atom of barium in it.

When the team sends the command, the lasers do their work: They suck the delicate quantum information out of atom A and send it into atom B. From the perspective of physics, it's the same as teleporting atom A across the table.

But here's where the reality clashes with the superpower. Imagine you built a human-sized version of this technology. To teleport, you'd need about a billion-billion-billion atoms waiting at your destination that could be arranged into you.

Originally entitled: “Beam Me Up? Teleporting Is Real, Even If Trekkie Transport Isn't”

Robert O'Leary 150x150Robert O’Leary, JD BARA, has had an abiding interest in alternative health products & modalities since the early 1970’s & he has seen how they have made people go from lacking health to vibrant health. He became an attorney, singer-songwriter, martial artist & father along the way and brings that experience to his practice as a BioAcoustic Soundhealth Practitioner, under the tutelage of the award-winning founder of BioAcoustic Biology, Sharry Edwards, whose Institute of BioAcoustic Biology has now been serving clients for 30 years with a non-invasive & safe integrative modality that supports the body’s ability to self-heal using the power of the human voice. Robert brings this modality to serve clients in Greater Springfield (MA), New England & “virtually” the world, with his website, He can also be reached at romayasoundhealth

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4 Reader Comments

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  1.' James T. Bass says:

    Where is the article?

  2.' Conscious Life News says:

    Sorry. Here it is:

  3.' John Rollo says:

    15 years or so ago….

  4.' Glen Swartwout says:

    But… you are not your biological body. You are your spirit body, which can already potentially bilocate or teleport, because it is a macroscopic sized quantum object, an extended condensate with superfluidity, superconductivity and other quantum dynamic properties…

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