China’s increasing expertise in both space science and the quantum world has created another milestone in the field of quantum entanglement. A team of physicists from China has reported that it has sent ‘spooky’ intertwined quantum particles from a satellite to ground stations, which are at a distance of 1200 kilometers from each other. The result has smashed the previous world records and is a breakthrough in the field of ultrasecure communication networks and space-based quantum internet.
Experiment to Open New Avenues for Hack-proof Communication
Entanglement includes placing objects in a peculiar intermediate stage of quantum superposition, in which quantum properties of an object fill in multiple states at once, just like Schrödinger’s cat. Then those states are shared among various objects. On the basis of theory, even if entangled objects separated, their quantum states, which is precarious in nature, should remain linked until they are tried to be disturbed or measured. The measurement can instantly determine the state of the other object irrespective of the distance. The concept is so contrary to the normal intuition that Albert Einstein pegged it as “spooky action at a distance.” The test has been gaining prominence and is being used for increased distances since the 1970s.
Apart from its fundamental result, such experiments also open doors to hack-proof communications. Large strings of entangled photons can be “quantum keys” that secure communications. Any attempt to hack a quantum-encrypted message would disrupt the shared key, alerting everyone who is a part of the communication about a compromised channel.