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Tuesday, 26 July 2011

20/20 hindsight: a retrospective

Five scientists at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology report the direct observation of optical precursors of heralded single photons with step- and square-modulated wave packets passing through cold atoms in this months Physical Review Letters. Using electromagnetically induced transparency and the slow-light effect, they separated the single-photon precursor, which always travels at the speed of light in vacuum, from its delayed main wave packet. In the two-level superluminal medium, their result suggests that the causality holds for a single photon, or in other words, nothing travels faster than light and you can't travel.

I have made similar observations, that led to the same conclusion, except that my observation was that lottery draws appear to be very rarely won by Chinese physics professors, which leads indirectly to the same conclusion.

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