Frozen light could power computers

Kajun
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Frozen light could power computers

Post by Kajun »

Says El Reg.
Scientists at Harvard University have discovered how to freeze light, so that it can be used to build an optical computer, theoretically capable of processing information ten times faster than traditional electronics.

The researchers, led by Prof. Lene Hau, has calculated that controlled, coherent processing with light can be performed using ultra-cold atoms known as Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs). Hau outlined her research yesterday at the Physics 2005 conference in Warwick.

Hau has discovered, in her work on slow light, that a BEC can preserve the phase and amplitude of a light pulse. In normal matter, these properties would be smeared out, destroying any information content. If a device can be built that preserves that information, Hau argues, it could be developed into the CPU of an optical computer.
Quite. All those iPods running at 0 degrees absolute would help combat global warming too.
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