Science has enabled mankind to embark on a new path and has the ability to study and explore the nature of things. With the help of science, human civilization has achieved a qualitative leap. Not only has it gained a new understanding of macroscopic things, but it has also begun to study and explore the mysteries of the microscopic world.
In this world, light is a universal thing. We see light every day and we have to deal with light. Since the existence of light is very common, there is nothing special and magical about light in the eyes of the ancients. However, with the continuous development and progress of human civilization, some wise men began to think about what is the research light?
For the study of light, some philosophers put forward some research theories as early as the ancient Greek era, but in the subsequent thousands of years, the cognition and exploration of light did not make much progress. It was not until the 17th century that science began to step onto the stage of history, and at this time humanity’s study of light entered a new era.
In the years after the 17th century, scientists had disagreements on the nature of light, and developed “wave theory” and “particle theory.” The proponents of the “wave theory” believe that the essence of light is a kind of wave, while the proponents of the “particle theory” believe that the essence of light should be a kind of particle. So who is right?
I believe many of my friends now know that light has a wave-particle two-like particle, which means that it is both a particle and a wave. So how is this “microwave war” about light harnessed? We all understand that in order for scientific theories to become truth, they need to be proved by experiments. What is the nature of light? It also needs related experiments to prove it.
Among the experiments on light, the “double slit experiment” is undoubtedly the most representative. I believe that many friends have done this physics experiment in high school. This is a very simple physics experiment, mainly composed of three parts: the transmitter, a wooden board with double slits, and a screen to display light and electronic traces.
When we emit photons through the emitter, some obvious traces will appear on the screen behind. Through these traces, we can clearly see that the photons interfered with each other through the double slits, leaving ripples on the screen. The initial “double-slit experiment” emitter emits continuous photons, which preliminarily proves the characteristics of light.
In 1909, some scientists upgraded the experiment, letting a photon be emitted, and then observed and compared it. Through experiments, we have seen that even if only one photon is emitted, interference fringes still appear on the rear screen. This shows that a photon also passes through the two channels and interferes with itself.
A simple physical experiment proved that light is a wave. In subsequent experiments, scientists used electrons to conduct experiments and also came to the same conclusion. In fact, not only photons and electrons have such quantum properties, but nuclear molecules also have such properties. Basically all particles exhibit wave-particle duality.
Such experimental results have made scientists doubt the nature of the universe: Is the universe really uncertain, and everything is an indecisive random event? In order to better study the quantum properties of photons, the scientists modified the “double slit experiment” again, adding a link to the experiment, that is, installing several cameras.
The purpose of the scientist is to use a camera to record and observe how photons are transformed from particles into waves. If we can record this process, perhaps we will better understand this magical quantum phenomenon.
The experiment started in the expectation of the scientists, but the results surprised us. After adding the camera, the photons passed through the channel smoothly in the state of particles without leaving interference fringes on the screen. When we removed the camera, a magical scene appeared: interference fringes appeared on the screen.
Such results really surprised scientists. After conducting many experiments, scientists had to admit to facing such a fact. It seems that as long as human beings take the initiative to observe, the state of these photons will not change, hiding their wave characteristics.
This experiment also tells us: In nature, if we do not actively observe, the state of quantum is the coexistence of the two states of particle and wave, but when we actively observe, quantum only shows its particle side, and the wave side. Hide it. It’s a bit like Schrodinger’s cat. If there is no observer, we will never know whether the cat is dead or alive.
A simple physics experiment has appeared to make people feel scared. The world we see is a macro world, and behind the macro is a micro quantum world. If the quantum world only reveals its true side when we are not actively observing, does that mean that the world we are seeing is not complete?
In classical mechanics, the observer has no influence on any phenomenon, but in quantum mechanics, the observer’s existence seems to have a great influence on the universe. This also makes us doubt the authenticity of the universe seen by humans. Someone once put forward the “virtual universe hypothesis”, which believes that our universe may be a virtual space.
If this is the case, I believe that many friends will find it difficult to accept. Of course, all of this is just a guess at the moment. The “double slit experiment” proves the characteristics of light and also allows us to see the huge influence of the observer on photons. What is the situation behind this influence? It also requires continuous efforts of scientists to explore.
We also don’t need to feel “horrified” about this experimental phenomenon. The huge influence of the observer on the experiment may just be due to the lack of perfection of the current scientific theory of human beings, which shows a kind of deviation. Perhaps with the continuous advancement of human science and technology, there will be more complete scientific theories in the future, which can explain the weird phenomenon shown in the “double-slit experiment”. We look forward to this day.