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Intrigued by the concept of teleportation

  1. Jan 12, 2004 #1
    Hi.

    I have always always been intrigued by the concept of teleportation and with the recent advances in quantum teleportation at the University of Innsbruck the results are encouraging. However, it should be noted that this form of teleportation doesn't allow physicists to teleport the photon itself--only its properties to another, remote photon. Here is the site:

    http://www.aip.org/physnews/graphics/html/teleport.htm


    I'm an aspiring science fiction writer and what I want to do in my story is achieve teleportation by actually teleporting the people themselves, not their properties. So, I began thinking about how I was going to do that. I thought about creating a teleporter that works by converting matter into energy and reconverting the energy back into matter, sort of like sending people across huge distances like radio signals.


    1) Since we are talking pure theory here, is the matter/energy conversion process teleportation in the literal sense, at least theorically?

    2) Does conversion of matter into energy and vice-versa in this case imply the destruction of the person undergoing the process, only to be replaced by a replica in theory?

    3) If not, what could be the best method for my story?


    Neroon
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2004
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 13, 2004 #2
    I think the word "teleportation" as related to entangled pairs is a red herring. I think there is a much closer analogy to entangled pairs in things like remote robotic surgery. In this instance the movements that the surgeon makes remotely also happen in the surgery room by a robot. If you extend the robot analogy so that its physically identical to the surgeon then you would have a "perfect" analogy.

    The other problem is that to get the effect in a remote location you still have to physically move the replica of the surgeon to the operating room. This isn't what we've come to expect in terms of the Star Trek idea of almost instantaneous energy transferal that then materializes into the surgeon.

    Finally, they've only succeeded in doing this at the particle level, up to and including entire atoms. This is because the quantum signature at the particle level is relatively simple. But looking at the problem from a science fiction viewpoint I think you could still use it and it would be much more convincing if you included this info as a historical background limitation and then invented some new angle that added something that gets you to where you, as an author, want to be in terms of the traditional view of teleportation.
     
  4. Jan 13, 2004 #3

    LURCH

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    Re: Teleportation


    Greetings Neroon and welcome to the Forums!

    I don't think so. At least, not in the common usage of the word. You see, when speaking of "teleportation" most people (especially those in the scientific community) mean the concept of information getting from one place to another without passing through the intervening space.

    What you've got hold of there is more of a "transporter", a la Star Trek. That fictional device converts people and things into energy and then simply transmits them to a distant location where they are converted back into matter.

    That rather depends on whose theory. If you agree with the AIP's statement in the link you provided, then the answer is yes. The original is destroyed, and a replica is created in the new location.

    However, many Quantum physicists hold the notion that the existence of a material object is nothing more than the sum of the information that describes that object. If this concept is true, then the photon "Bob" receives actually is the same photon "Alice" sent.
     
  5. Jan 13, 2004 #4

    Kurdt

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    Your idea of matter-energy conversion is correct in the sense it can be achieved. Also if the person were converted to energy and 100% of that energy were transferred to the "assembly" site then assuming you had some method of storing the individual information for every atom in the body then in the wildest theories it would be possible to re-assemble the person without destroying them. If on the otherhand you were worried about losing their brain patterns which has been a topic of discussion elsewhere before, I hold the premise that these are just electrochemical signals and as such energy which will be easily re-assembled if you have a machine that can make something as complex as the human body.

    My only concern would be the Heisenberg priciple which states that it is impossible to know the position and moentum of an atom to infinite precision. On the scale of the billions of atoms that a human consists of there would have to be some method to compensate for this.
     
  6. Jan 13, 2004 #5
    Re: Re: Teleportation

    Hi Lurch.

    Thanks for the greeting!

    My previous question,

    "Since we are talking pure theory here, is the matter/energy conversion process teleportation in the literal sense, at least theorically?"


    Your answer,

    "I don't think so. At least, not in the common usage of the word. You see, when speaking of 'teleportation' most people (especially those in the scientific community) mean the concept of information getting from one place to another without passing through the intervening space. What you've got hold of there is more of a "transporter", a la Star Trek. That fictional device converts people and things into energy and then simply transmits them to a distant location where they are converted back into matter."


    1) But if we were to theorically convert a person into energy and then transmit it to another location, would the energy itself be unable to pass through walls and ceilings?


    2) What form of energy would this be catagorized as?


    My second previous question,

    "Does conversion of matter into energy and vice-versa in this case imply the destruction of the person undergoing the process, only to be replaced by a replica in theory?"


    Your answer,

    "That rather depends on whose theory. If you agree with the AIP's statement in the link you provided, then the answer is yes. The original is destroyed, and a replica is created in the new location. However, many Quantum physicists hold the notion that the existence of a material object is nothing more than the sum of the information that describes that object. If this concept is true, then the photon 'Bob' receives actually is the same photon 'Alice' sent."


    3) What is your opinion regarding this?


    Neroon
     
  7. Jan 14, 2004 #6

    LURCH

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    Re: Re: Re: Teleportation



    Actually, the answer to the second question would determine the answer to the first. If we convert our subject to EM radiation, he could be transmitted in any number of wavelengths. In the form of visible light, he wouldn't get through much, any door or wall or other obstruction would scatter him irretievably. On the other hand, if he were converted into radio waves, he might pass through most obstructions without being effected.

    But if you could convert him into gravity waves, that would be ideal. Then he would pass through any and all obstacles without being hindered or altered.
    I think that physical existence is entirely encompassed by the physical information that describes that existence. Therefore, I would say that the person who arrives at the destination of a transporter or teleporter is physically the same person who dematerialize from the departure point. That is of course dependent upon the condition that all of the physical information describing the original is also true for the "copy". To me this is simply the "flip side" of Aristotle's law of non-contradiction.

    I also happen to be one who believes that physical existence is not the totality of all existence. However, if there is a nonphysical component to a person, I still would contend that the entire person, both the material and immaterial parts of him, get transported.
     
  8. Jan 14, 2004 #7
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Teleportation


    But if the subject is able to pass through all obstacles, wouldn't it be impossible to "re-capture" or reconvert the subject into matter if he or she is traveling in the form of gravity waves?

    Neroon
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2004
  9. Jan 14, 2004 #8

    Kurdt

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    Its theoretically not impossible to capture information from gravity waves. One of the big experimental projects in physcis that is going on at the moment is on a large interferometer that is able to receive information from gravity waves. The trouble is this apparatus is literally miles long and therefore maybe in your sci-fi novel travel between planets would be conducted in this manner, that is assuming that there are other worlds in this sci-fi adventure ;)
     
  10. Jan 14, 2004 #9

    Interesting. Is there someway to somehow make this apparatus smaller and portable?

    Neroon
     
  11. Jan 15, 2004 #10
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Teleportation

    Good Idea!

    The different values of the microgravity should do as a spectrum analysis. Advanced though.
     
  12. Jan 15, 2004 #11

    Kurdt

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    The problem is gravity wave wavelengths tend to be quite large thats why such big equipment is needed to detect them. Having said this, these waves are just for natural sources only. one type of failed detector involoved a large aluminium coil (i forget the exact dimensions) that had strain gauges attached all over it. Basically the time reversal theory came into play saying that if you could detect gravity waves from the microscopic "squashing" of aluminium then you could also create your own by doing this process in reverse (the same way you create radio signals). Thus it may be possible to create artificial gravity waves of a shorter wavelength and thus detect them in a smaller apparatus. Also, the everyday stellar objects we see (or don't in some cases) such as neutron stars and black holes have a large size and therefore their frequency of rotation is generally large creating long wavelength gravity waves. A quantum singularity on the other hand could create wavelengths that are considerably shorter so the theory that you can create your own short wavelengths may hold water.
     
  13. Jan 15, 2004 #12
    I have a question. How long can a theory of gravity that includes gravity waves exist in the face of zero, zip, nada experimental evidence? Isn't there a statute of limitation for believing in these things. I think a theory, no matter how intriguing, becomes pseudoscience after a certain amount of time in the face of this lack of physical evidence.
     
  14. Jan 15, 2004 #13

    Kurdt

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    Firstly general relativity which gravitational waves are a prediction of has very strong supporting evidence. That is, in the positivist sense the theory has not been disproved in any experiment designed to do just that. Also, a second point I believe may hold strong our faith in the fact that these gravity waves exist is that the prdiction of them is not nearly so wild a thought as the existence of say a tachyon, which would appear to be merely a mathematical quirk (although secretly I would love to prove their existance). So mathematical evidence is in their favour. Another example is if you oscillate anything in a medium which is directly affected by it it will produce some sort of wave based on the frequency of oscillation, string of a guitar causes pressure waves in air for example. Since it is known that space and time are directly effected by mass and energy then should it not also cause a wave in space-time when energy and mass oscillate? A true scientist would never dismiss anything until they had evidence for it not being true.

    Also if you want some "indirect" evidence of gravitational waves then look up the experiment that won nobel prize for physics in 1993.
     
  15. Jan 15, 2004 #14
    I understand you believe in gravity waves but at some point mathematical proof or prediction(as in GR) no longer can be taken on faith. Unfortunately one can never prove a negative. I don't know what you think about string theory but it also is mathematically valid and self consistant. Its not being closed minded to not believe in something that is mathematically proven if it isn't also experimentally proven after a long time. There are probably numerous self consistant mathematical proofs about gravity that we don't even know about. But there is probably only one of those self-consistant theories that actually models gravitational reality. And the reason we will know its the right one is because over time experimental results will be overwhelmingly in its favor. I think you're trying to avoid the unfortunate reality that there would have been at least a "little" experimental confirmation over time of gravity waves and gravitons since GR was concieved by Einstein.

    I have my own ideas about gravity but I don't want to be accused of self promotion because I don't have any proof either.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2004
  16. Jan 16, 2004 #15

    Kurdt

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    I'm just saying don't discount it yet because it is hard to detect them, but the construction of such devices such as VIRGO and LIGO should either prove or disprove their existence.
     
  17. Jan 16, 2004 #16
    I hope you're right. I'm always for progress in science even at the cost of my own ideas as long as the other person's theory is proven right.
     
  18. Jan 27, 2004 #17
    Teleportation

    Kurdt

    My only concern would be the Heisenberg priciple which states that it is impossible to know the position and moentum of an atom to infinite precision. On the scale of the billions of atoms that a human consists of there would have to be some method to compensate for this.

    I agree in a sense with Kurdt with the paragraph copied and pasted above, I believe that a good way to compensate for this is keeping the body at very cold temperature and putting the body in shock or a sorta near death experience to slow the particles in the human body to get a more precise reading or scaning of the genetic/biological makeup of the particular human.

    -----------------------My theory in respect with this statement from Neurons page But if we were to theorically convert a person into energy and then transmit it to another location, would the energy itself be unable to pass through walls and ceilings? My theory is that if we converted the person into energy or like an electronic mapping system of the particular human down to the very basic quantum principle and more simple if possible, the goal would be to make an electronic map that could be transmitted via telephone, cable modem, satellite as a frequency sorta like the frequencies that we see on the TV technology but instead of sending this to a tv we would be sending it to the receiving station that maybe it could be possible.

    In a response to exeric
    I have a question. How long can a theory of gravity that includes gravity waves exist in the face of zero, zip, nada experimental evidence? Isn't there a statute of limitation for believing in these things. I think a theory, no matter how intriguing, becomes pseudoscience after a certain amount of time in the face of this lack of physical evidence.
    My theory is that Where is a a place where the face of zero would exist because we have to take into consideration everything when we say the phrase zero and the universe is far to vast to say zero. To my knowledge the phrase absolute vaccum is unobtainable because we have infinity in the universe as far as size and where we have infinity as in size there will always be a object small enough to enter such a space and if there were such a space where would we place particles like photons and neutrinos that like any particle could be the subject of a polarity change thus attaching itself to the original particle at hand inside such an environment through static because to my knowledge everything in our universe is moving around something.
     
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