The Physics of 2 != 1+1
Air Date: 07/20/2006
Air Time: 10:15 AM EST
Length: 1 Hours, 2 Minutes, 10 Seconds
Feynman was probably correct to say that the only mystery of quantum mechanics is the principle of superposition. Although we may never know which slit a photon has been passing in a Young’s double-slit experiment, we do have a corresponding classical concept in classical electromagnetic theory: the superposition of electromagnetic fields at a local space-time point is a solution of the Maxwell equations. In the case of joint photo-detection measurement of two photons, however, the superposition involves the addition of two-photon amplitudes, different yet indistinguishable alternatives resulting in a click-click joint photo-detection event. There is no counterpart of such concept in classical electromagnetic theory and the superposition may happen at distance. It is the two-photon superposition responsible for the mysteries of EPR by means of reality and causality. This talk will analyze the physics of based on several recent experiments.