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How instantaneous?

  1. Nov 24, 2007 #1

    I was reading this from the Wikipedia entry on Quantum Entanglement:

    "...measurements performed on one system seem to be instantaneously influencing other systems entangled with it..."

    I was wondering, how instantaneous exactly is instantaneous? Is there really no time delay between the two particles picking their states? And, have there been any experiments done to confirm this?

  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 24, 2007 #2
    From what I've read (which isn't really that much...), nobody knows how entanglement works. Some people think that the particles were given the properties measured at their creation and others think that this shows a lack of locality (the need to send a signal of some sort between two objects in order for them to influence one another). Personally I think the second possibility is really neat. Yet others think that quantum entanglement gives evidence that space is just a concept and not a physical entity; that it doesn't really exist.

    If you're really interested in this you should read The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene. There's a section in there that covers this topic pretty extensively.

    I think the short answer to your question is yes, particles seem to influence each other instantaneously regardless of the distance between them.

    If anyone finds any misinformation in my explanation please let me know; I don't know very much about this.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2007
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