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Quantum Beam Experiment Shows That Shock Waves From Molecular Beam Can Be Suppressed with Cold Skimmers

By Menahem, Zen menahem.zen@gmail.com | Jun 08, 2017 01:31 PM EDT

In their experiment, researchers from the Chemical Physics Department at the Weizmann Institute of Science have found the way to suppress and even eliminate the shock waves in the quantum beam. Cooling the surface of skimmers with cryocooling is proven to reduce the shock waves.

Reducing shockwave in the quantum beam is necessary for the chemical experiment because it will maintain the beam density of the particle for studying the chemical reactions. A team of researchers from the Weizmann Institute of Science is now able to suppress the effect of shockwave in the quantum beam.

In the study of chemical reaction for decades, scientists used the cold-beam experiment to study cold molecules. In order to achieve the cold molecules, scientists use "skimmer," a tiny cone shape tools to create a cold beam of flying atoms and molecules. Unfortunately, the skimmers produce a shockwave in the quantum beam that reduces the number of particles that can be sent into the beam.

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This limitation as a result of shockwave in the quantum beam can now be reduced with the latest research from Professor Edvardas Narevicius and his team, which has been published in the Science Advance Journal vol. 3/3. Professor Narevicius used the aeronautic engineering principle to overcome the shockwave problem. The lead author of the paper is Professor Narevicius' student Yair Segev, an expert in aerospace technology and physics.

“This was a perfect problem for my student, Yair Segev,” Professor Narevicius said regarding the problem of shockwave in the quantum beam. “Researchers have not known how to overcome this limit, placing many interesting experiments beyond reach."

The principle of aeronautic engineering is used by simulating the particle flow in the skimmers that exhibit the shockwave in the quantum beam. They repeated the simulation using the skimmers that have been cooled using the cryocooling to only ten degrees above absolute zero temperature. This time the atoms and molecules flow without disturbance from the skimmers, as can be seen in the video below:

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