Quantum Physics Materialized |

1. Diamond-NV-center-960x640

The world-changing and yet so intangible research in the field of Quantum Physics is for most of us something completely incomprehensible. For many years now, a group of researchers in Delft is trying to find proof of so called ‘quantum entanglement’, which would tackle Einstein’s theory on locality. In short, quantum entanglement means that particles can be connected over a large distance without the use of any medium. This entanglement could ultimately lead us to the phenomenon that is known as teleportation.

With this Design Research project Studio KNOL tried to capture the elusive process of establishing entanglement in an experimental and visual manner. With use of unexpected materials, the invisible world of quantum physics is translated into a scale to which we can relate. The series of images are part of the larger research project Between Science and Fiction.

In collaboration with material designer Floor van Doremalen.

1. Photons
1. Spin-Entangled
1. Photon-Detector
1. Beamsplitter

Photo 1: Interpretation of the atomic structure of a DIAMOND, the first stage of the process of establishing entanglement. This image represents the carbon structure and its imperfection; a Nitrogen Vacancy center, from which photons emit. Material: coloured water and 50 mm watch-glasses on a taped grid.

Photo 2:  Interpretation of PHOTONS escaping from the diamond. Only a few photons are suitable for establishing entanglement. This image visualizes this exclusivity. Material: small foam balls suspended in the air by fish wires.

Photo 3: Interpretation of ENTANGLEMENT. Two spinning whirlabouts represent two particles that are entangled over a large distance. Although their individual spin direction is undefined, their joint (direction of) spin is correlated. Material: coloured sliced sheet and a glass tube.

Photo 4: Interpretation of a PHOTON DETECTOR. This detector indicates whether entanglement is established correctly. The image represents a photon ‘dropping’ onto a detector plate. Material: coloured sheet under a glass 100 mm convex lense.

Photo 5: Interpretation of the BEAM SPLITTER. Cyan and coral threads represent photon beams interweaving in case of entanglement. These beams each come from one of the two distanced labs (1.3 km). The photons interfere and form a graphic pattern. Material: nylon threads suspended over an incised frame.

This project was made possible by Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie.