A Chinese research team announced Monday that they have successfully been able to teleport an object from Earth to space for the first time, destroying the previous teleportation distance record and proving once more that teleportation is a real phenomenon.
On Monday, The MIT Technology Review reported that a team of Chinese researchers with the Micius project had announced the results of their first series of experiments. The team says that they have managed to teleport a photon from their station in the Tibetan mountains to the orbiting Micius satellite, at a distance of 500 km. China has recently blown minds the world over by demonstrating teleportation of photons at distance, sending a photon 100 km. This latest announcement leaves that record in the dust, and with it, the previous conceptions of what is possible.
The way it works is based on the idea of quantum entanglement. Two photons that are created at the same moment share the same existence and are linked in such a way that no matter how far the distance, any changes happening to one of the objects happens instantaneously to the other.
Quantum entanglement has been described by scientists as “spooky action at a distance.”
In this case, teleportation means to make a one photon take on all of the information of it’s linked twin. The receiving photon, in effect, becomes the same object as the first, just somewhere else.
While many people would consider teleportation an idea for sci-fi movies and nothing more, scientists have long thought it was entirely possible and have demonstrated the basics as far back as the 1990s. That’s right, scientists have been playing around with this stuff since the Clinton administration.
It has been demonstrated in labs many times since then, and quantum entanglement is now a staple of modern scientific research. What makes this series of announcements from China important is that these are the first experiments outside of a controlled environment, bringing this technology to a point where it can be researched for real world applications.
This also marks a point where China has replaced the United States as the nation on the forefront of this new field of research.
Using this technology, scientists hope to be able to communicate across vast distances of space without any delay, making manned missions to Mars and other planets much more feasible.
The teleportation of large objects is still a long way off, but scientists say this is the first step down a road where anything is possible.
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