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Curated by RSF Research Staff

Satellite-Distributed Entanglement

Communication capabilities may have just been taken to the next level and that driving force is the enigmatic phenomenon of quantum entanglement.

To reiterate from a previous post, “Quantum entanglement – often associated with quantum weirdness – is the correlation between two or more particles that either came from the same source or interacted with each other at some point in spacetime. This correlation maintains whether the particles are in close proximity or whether they are far away from one another.”

However, although no one really understands and knows what’s behind quantum entanglement numerous experiments are continuously revealing new results and significant developments in quantum communications are being made. Previously scientists had successfully entangled photons over distances of 100 miles – the limit of which was based on the method to send the photons across space – which relied on optical fibers and thus suffered signal degradation.

Now, a team of scientists from China, dubbed team Micius, are using satellites to send the photons through space to ground stations on Earth – and with no obstacle hindering their path they have successfully remained in a quantum entangled state at a separation of over 1200 km. This is the greatest distance ever achieved and has huge implications for quantum communications which allows both secure and fast communication.


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