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    Thread: Majorana Fermion Discovered?

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      Majorana Fermion Discovered?

      In 1937, after the rise of quantum mechanics, Ettore Majorana, an Italian theoretical physicist, realized that the new physics implied the existence of a novel type of particles, now called Majorana fermions. After a 75-year hunt, researchers have now spotted the first solid evidence of their existence. And their discovery could hold the key to finally creating workable quantum computers... more here
      tommo likes this.

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      Oh, they're trying to define the majorana as a collective interaction of elementary particles (quasiparticle) which is a bit less interesting.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Wayfaerer View Post
      Oh, they're trying to define the majorana as a collective interaction of elementary particles (quasiparticle) which is a bit less interesting.
      What do you think quarks are? Quarks as Quasiparticles

      The classification of this particular particle is interesting because it is produced in different circumstances than at a collider; the interface between a tiny semiconductor wire and a superconducting electrode. They found these data via Nanotech, and emergent phenomena.

      As well as backing Majorana's original prediction, the discovery also agrees with more recent theoretical work that the particle could be lurking within solid-state devices. The latter could be important for the development of quantum computers because Majorana fermions – unlike more familiar "Dirac" fermions, such as electrons – obey "non-Abelian statistics" and so should be resistant to environmental noise. Majorana fermions could, therefore, be able to store and transmit quantum information without being perturbed by the outside world, which is the bane of anyone trying to build a practical quantum computer.
      Last edited by Phion; 04-28-2012 at 11:32 PM.

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      Also, what this experiment failed to do was describe any expected topological structure,

      The team acknowledges that its measurements do not confirm the expected topological properties of the Majorana fermions that it has seen – something that would make the particles useful for quantum-computing applications. To do so, the team suggests a number of new experiments to measure other properties of the quasiparticles to establish their non-Abelian nature.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Phion View Post
      What do you think quarks are? Quarks as Quasiparticles
      Thanks, but I couldn't get access to the article. Could you explain how quarks are quasiparticles? Wouldn't that require them to be composed of smaller parts?

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      Quote Originally Posted by Wayfaerer View Post
      Thanks, but I couldn't get access to the article. Could you explain how quarks are quasiparticles? Wouldn't that require them to be composed of smaller parts?
      They are composed of smaller parts! Quarks are a generalization of groups of particles that behave very similarly, and thus are categorized up, down, left, right, strange, and charm, depending on their "spin" (a quality of particles that describes behavior after a collision). The modern standard model is the closest practical explanation we have for these events, but by no means is the end-all-be-all theory of physics, save unification.

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      Oh ok, I think I underestimated the definition of quasiparticles.

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      I'm actually still a little confused here... Quasiparticles are defined as emergent entities that only act like elementary particles of their own (as far as I interpreted). I can understand how quarks could be seen as necessarily a part of quasiparticles, like protons and neutrons, but if they're quasiparticles themselves wouldn't this entail unknown elementary particles who's interactions create them? I thought quarks were thought to be elementary as of now, am I just thinking about this wrong?
      Last edited by Wayfaerer; 05-21-2012 at 03:08 AM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Wayfaerer View Post
      I can understand how quarks could be seen as necessarily a part of quasiparticles, like protons and neutrons, but if they're quasiparticles themselves wouldn't this entail unknown elementary particles who's interactions create them?
      It entails the entire statistical framework describing intrinsic angular momentum, interaction between particles, properties of decay, and more; basically, how particles behave after a collision, or other natural event such as atmospheric phenomena.

      Quote Originally Posted by Wayfaerer View Post
      I thought quarks were thought to be elementary as of now, am I just thinking about this wrong?
      Quarks are the neatest organizing theory we have about these particles, bringing together literally hundreds of know particles in a clean description of reality, based, again, on statistical methods. The origins of which can be traced all the way back to early interpretations of the atom by Thompson, Rutherford, and Bhor, proceeding with Dirac's theory of the electron all the way up to Feynman and Gellmann who established much of the ground work for field theories and invented quark theory itself. My advice would be to start from a more historical perspective before you jump into the deep end, it's full of exciting maths and physical concepts, but history is always enjoyable!

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      Quote Originally Posted by Phion View Post
      It entails the entire statistical framework describing intrinsic angular momentum, interaction between particles, properties of decay, and more; basically, how particles behave after a collision, or other natural event such as atmospheric phenomena.
      This is still ambiguous to me, are you saying that quarks can be seen as quasiparticles of their properties?


      Quote Originally Posted by Phion View Post
      Quarks are the neatest organizing theory we have about these particles, bringing together literally hundreds of know particles in a clean description of reality, based, again, on statistical methods. The origins of which can be traced all the way back to early interpretations of the atom by Thompson, Rutherford, and Bhor, proceeding with Dirac's theory of the electron all the way up to Feynman and Gellmann who established much of the ground work for field theories and invented quark theory itself. My advice would be to start from a more historical perspective before you jump into the deep end, it's full of exciting maths and physical concepts, but history is always enjoyable!
      Way ahead of you here. Reading about physics is about the only thing I actually do. lol Although I try to keep the historical steps and egos as far in the periphery as possible.
      Last edited by Wayfaerer; 05-22-2012 at 06:14 AM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Wayfaerer View Post
      This is still ambiguous to me, are you saying that quarks can be seen as quasiparticles of their properties?
      Quarks can be seen as quasiparticles which are distinctive in their statistical descriptions based on certain know properties that are observed during their manifestation, yes. Another type of quasiparticle you might be familiar with is the phonon and its application to solid state electronics, crystallography, thermodynamics, and other subjects. Emergent phenomena are often described by their modes of vibration, oscillations, and other general mathematical behavior within microscopic physical lattice structures. Quantum mechanics is only one aspect of the usefulness of the idea of quasiparticles, but it is definitely the most complex version of the quasipartcle umbrella.

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