The Quantum Teleportation Phenomenon essay

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The possibility of transmitting quantum information has led to several developments and discoveries in quantum communication and quantum computation. Most of these discoveries have been fascinating especially the discovery of quantum teleportation. Generally, this phenomenon entails a particle at a given location A travelling by simply reappearing at a distant place B at a later time. Scientists have argued on the possibility of transferring quantum states of a particle on to another. Condition for such transfer of quantum states as only possible provided one does not get any information about the state in the course of this transformation.  The main line of criticism on quantum transfer was the effect of the individual quantum properties of particles during the transformation, which according to Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle could not be measured with arbitrary precision.

Consequently, the possibility of quantum transfer has made quantum teleportation possible. This phenomenon involves the transmission and reconstruction over arbitrary distances of the states of a quantum system. This essay discusses how quantum teleportation takes place and some issues that have emerged due to the phenomenon. It recognizes that in teleportation, the information disappears in one location and resurfaces in another without having existed in any intermediate location.

The understanding of the current physical universe underlies on quantum physics. Quantum theorists have been involved in understanding the behavior of subatomic particles, the properties of atomic nucleus and structure of molecules that are collectively described in quantum terms (Rae, 1994). They have argued that a number of quantum theories have been haunted by conceptual and philosophical challenges resulting in misunderstanding and misrepresentation of scientific facts. Quantum teleportation is one of such phenomenon. It is a technique that involves movement of quantum states even in the absence of a quantum communication channel linking the sender of the quantum state to the recipient. In quantum teleportation, not the whole object is teleported but rather just its state from one to another.

The Quantum Teleportation Phenomenon

It is only the state of a quantum particle that can be teleported in quantum physics. This is due to the Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle which forbids cloning because science cannot simultaneously determine the position of one copy of the particle and the momentum on the other particle (Sahni, 2007). 

Quantum teleportation is based on the recreation of an object B from an object A. First, all the properties of object A are analyzed and later a string of classical information are channeled to object B. However, Dunningham and Veldak (2011) asserted that such situation may not be possible when there is a single quantum system that is in an unknown state. In order to completely determine the object’s quantum state, one would require an infinite collection of identically prepared quantum systems. However, the superposition principle allows the existence of entangled states which are very important in quantum teleportation. Machiavello (2000) supported this notion arguing that entangled states could be produced and measured by teleportation.

The Experimental Effect

Experimental Set-Up

The experimental set up requires the basic unit of quantum information referred to as a qubit and a communication channel. A pair of entangled qubits entangled are then generated and distributed to two distinct locations, say A and B. At A, a Bell measurement of the EPR (Einstein-Podolsk-Rosen) pair qubit and the qubit to be teleported is performed, resulting into classical bits of information. Both qubits are consequently destroyed. Using the communication channel, the two qubits are sent to location B. At B, the EPR pair qubit is modified using the two bits to select the correct identical one of four possible quantum states (Dunningham and Veldak, 2011).

The Special Relativity

The quantum teleportation takes cognizance of a number of experimental factors. First, that the transfer of quantum information through teleportation at a speed higher than that of light is not possible since a classical communication channel prohibits speeds faster than that of light. Thus the Law of Special Relativity is factored in the experimental set up. The second factor is the uncertainty principle which is discussed later in this paper.

Correlation with Quantum Physics

Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle

Physicists have argued that an object cannot be measured or observed without disturbing it. Rae (1994) explained that the role of the observer is very instrumental in understanding any physical process in nature. Several principles and theories have guided physicists in the field of quantum mechanics. One such principle is the Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle which relates the simultaneous measurement for a quantum system of two different observables. In specific terms, this principle relates position and momentum, which are very important observables to physicists.

In quantum physics, this principle guides the measurement of two different observables on a collection of systems in the same state. According to Dunninghamm and Vedral (2011), the principle may be expressed mathematically;

Uncertainty Principle and Quantum Teleportation

The above equation clearly means that momentum (p) and position (x) are inversely proportional. Cerf (2007) explained that the relationship implied that when the position of any quantum mechanical particle can be measured with a very high precision then the momentum of the particle is spread over a wide range of values. In other words, it is not possible to accurately localize a particle with a well defined momentum.

The uncertainty Principle thus explains that the more accurately an object is measured, the more it is disturbed by the measuring process until one reaches a point where the object’s original state has been completely distorted but still without having extracted enough information for a perfect replica. Thus, a perfect copy can not be made due to the inability to extract sufficient information.

Quantum Entanglement

The second feature is the entanglement phenomenon. The achievement of quantum teleportation depends on entanglement which is an essential feature of quantum physics. It involves the relationship of a superposition of states between the possible quantum states of two objects. The relationship is such that when the possible states of one object collapse to a single state due to a suddenly imposed boundary conditions, “a similar and related collapse occurs in the possible states of the entangled entity no matter how or the location of the entangled entity”(Macchiavello, 2000).  

Dunninghan and Vedral (2011) argued that in classical physics particles can be correlated over long distances because an observer can prepare a system in a given state and then inform another observer in a different location to prepare the same state. It can be measured, transformed and even purified. A pair of quantum system in an entangled state can be used as a quantum information channel. However, experimental results have shown that quantum entanglement can survive over distances of up to 10 km (Dunningham and Vedral, 2011).

Entanglement and Teleportation

Scientists have come to the realization that an entangled state could be used to steer a distant particle into a set of states. Entanglement is very important in quantum teleportation. Sahni (2006) explained this by supposing that two objects A and B shared an entangled state say, two photons in an entangled state of polarization. Now supposing that object A had one of the entangled photons while object B had the other photon and object A had an additional photon in an unknown state of polarization. Then, Sahni (2006) argued that it was possible for A to perform an operation on the two photons in its possession that would transform B’s photon into one of four states. Thus, it was confirmed by Dunningham and Vedral (2011) that object A’s operation entangled the two photons in its possession while disentangling object B’s photon into a different state

Therefore , it can be noted that both objects A and B have succeeded in using their shared entangled state as a quantum communication channel to destroy the unknown state of polarization of a photon in A’s part of the universe. However, the destruction of a photon in A has resulted into its creation in the universe of B. Notably, object A would have to convey an infinite amount of classical information to object B to be able to reconstruct the unknown state of polarization of A in its world since the state of a photon requires specifying a direction in space.

Teleportation versus Transportation

The term teleportation is coined from two Greek words tele- meaning distant and portare which means to carry. Teleportation may refer to the transfer of matter from one distant or region to another without traversing the physical space between two or more matters. Sahni (2007) referred to teleportation as traveling from one place to another without any channel of human travel while Dunningham and Vedral (2011) asserted that it is the dematerializing of an object at point A and later its reappearance at a distant place B.

In fact, it is Scarani (2006) differentiation of teleportation from ordinary transport that highlights the importance of teleportation in quantum physics. He argued that whereas both are involved in transmission of information, in teleportation the information was not available at any intermediate location like in transport. Thus, the information rather “disappears in one location and reappears in another without having been available in any intermediate location” (Scerani, 2006).

Suitability of Teleportation

With these definitions, the term teleportation becomes suitable to refer to the phenomenon where a quantum object’s state is teleported from one point to another (Dunningham and Vedral, 2011). However, there should be caution on the use of the term. The main stress should be on the general understanding that the object does not actually move but rather it is its state from one particle to another that is transferred. Another emphasis should be on the understanding that after teleportation, the initial state of the particle is destroyed otherwise we would end up with two particles in the same state at the end of the teleportation (Cerf, 2007). As Dunningham and Vedral (2011) remarked, quantum particles are not distinguishable and are hence amounting to real teleportation.

In conclusion, this assay paper notes that teleportation can be explained. The arguments already made confirm that teleportation is possible. It notes that quantum energy can be transferred from one particle to another over an arbitrary distance of up to ten kilometers. The fact that no information is gained on either objects is enough evidence that teleportation is not a cloning occurrence. This can be illustrated by the fact that after a successful teleportation, object A will not be available in its original state and consequently object B will not be a clone but a result of teleportation.

Quantum teleportation is useful in quantum information and also in quantum computers. This development also allows new types of experiments and scientific research on foundations of quantum mechanics. Entanglement has recently been used in the development of quantum communication, quantum cryptography and quantum computation. Thus quantum teleportation is arguable one of the greatest occurrences in the quantum mechanics. 

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