In this weeks issue of Science, a Dartmouth researcher comments about a new experiment that brings us closer to connecting the macroscopic and the microscopic worlds.
Miles Blencowe, a quantum theorist with the Physics and Astronomy Department at Dartmouth, wrote the article "Nanomechanical Quantum Limits" for the "Perspectives" section of the April 2 issue of Science. In it, he explains the problem of reconciling the inherent contradiction between the quantum or atomic world and the macroscopic word of trees, buildings and cars that we live in.
"The world we live in follows the principles of classical physics," says Blencowe. "We see objects in one place. In the microscopic world, the quantum world, things can be in two places at once. The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle asserts that the more you try to localize an object the more you disturb it and it zooms away and then you dont know where it is anymore. Somehow the atomic world becomes ours as we go to larger and larger systems. Scientists want to know how that crossover from quantum to classical occurs."
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