2019-06-22 05:28:06

As reported by [arstechnica]:

Scientists at the National Institute for Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Maryland have developed a new form of atom based reciever which they've used to create a stereo recording of music streamed into the lab, an endeavour that took over 6 years to develop. They used "Rydberg atoms" which are in an especially excited state, and which make them especially sensitive to passing electric fields like radio waves. Then using lasers to measure them as a form of  quantum sensor, they can be used to recieve and play back radio signals. In essence, its a new form of atomic antenna that's more sensitive to a wider range of frequencies and resistant to interference, which may make them well suited to detecting the faint signals from deep space communications.

The sound quality is akin to that of vinyl records, the article includes an audio recording of a 'real-time' guitar recording using Rydberg atoms.

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