Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Acrobatics for anyons: New test for elusive fundamental particle proposed

Date:
June 21, 2011
Source:
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Summary:
Anyons are hypothetical particles that have been postulated to represent a third class of fundamental particles alongside the known bosons and fermions. Physicists in Germany have now proposed a novel experimental design that should make it possible to create and detect them for the first time.

Anyons are hypothetical particles that have been postulated to represent a third class of fundamental particles alongside the known bosons and fermions. Physicists from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet in Munich have now proposed a novel experimental design that should make it possible to create and detect them for the first time.

In quantum physics there are two classes of fundamental particles. Photons, the quanta of light, are bosons, while the protons and neutrons that make up atomic nuclei belong to the fermions. Bosons and fermions differ in their behavior at a very basic level. This difference is expressed in their quantum statistics. In the 1980s a third species of fundamental particle was postulated, which was dubbed the anyon. In their quantum statistics, anyons interpolate between bosons and fermions.

"They would be a kind of missing link between the two known sorts of fundamental particles," says LMU physicist Dr. Tassilo Keilmann. "According to the laws of quantum physics, anyons must exist -- but so far it hasn't been possible to detect them experimentally."

An international team of theorists under Keilmann's leadership has now taken an in-depth look at the question of whether it is possible to create anyons in the context of a realistic experiment. Happily for experimentalists, the answer is yes. The theoreticians have come up with an experimental design in which conventional atoms are trapped in a so-called optical lattice. Based on their calculations, it ought to be possible to manipulate the interactions between atoms in the lattice in such a way as to create and detect anyons. In contrast to the behavior of bosons and fermions, the exotic statistics of anyons should be continuously variable between the endpoints defined by the other two particle types.

"These novel quantum particles should be able to hop between sites in the optical lattice," says Keilmann. "More importantly, they and their quantum statistics should be continuously adjustable during the experiment." In that case, it might even be feasible to transmute bosons into anyons and then to turn these into fermions. Such a transition would be equivalent to a novel "statistically induced quantum phase transition," and would allow the anyons to be used for the construction of quantum computers that would be far more efficient than conventional electronic processors. "We have pointed to the first practical route to the detection of anyons," says Keilmann. "Experimentalists should be able to implement the set-up in the course of experiments that are already underway."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Tassilo Keilmann, Simon Lanzmich, Ian McCulloch, Marco Roncaglia. Statistically induced phase transitions and anyons in 1D optical lattices. Nature Communications, 2011; 2: 361 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms1353

Cite This Page:

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. "Acrobatics for anyons: New test for elusive fundamental particle proposed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110621131325.htm>.
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. (2011, June 21). Acrobatics for anyons: New test for elusive fundamental particle proposed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110621131325.htm
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München. "Acrobatics for anyons: New test for elusive fundamental particle proposed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110621131325.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

US Police Put Body Cameras to the Test

US Police Put Body Cameras to the Test

AFP (Oct. 1, 2014) — Police body cameras are gradually being rolled out across the US, with interest surging after the fatal police shooting in August of an unarmed black teenager. Duration: 02:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Argentina's Tax Evaders Detected, Hunted Down by Drones

Argentina's Tax Evaders Detected, Hunted Down by Drones

AFP (Sep. 30, 2014) — Argentina doesn't only have Lionel Messi the footballer, it has now also acquired "Mesi" the drone system which monitors undeclared mansions, swimming pools and soy fields to curb tax evasion in the country. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) — More and more studies are showing positive benefits to playing video games, but the jury is still out on brain training programs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

CERN Celebrates 60 Years of Science

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 29, 2014) — CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research, celebrates 60 years of bringing nations together through science. As Joanna Partridge reports from inside the famous science centre it's also planning to turn the Large Hadron Collider particle accelerator back on after an upgrade. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins