Scientists from the Chalmers University of Technology in Goteborg, Sweden, have revealed they just achieved an impossible feat – recording the sound of an atom. According to the researchers, they constructed an artificial atom of 0.01 millimeters in size and placed this at the end of a high conductor material. They then directed sound waves on the conductor material, which bounced off from the atom, and this sound they recorded with the aid of a tiny microphone.
According to the scientists, the recorded atom sound was a “D-note” which is almost 20 octaves higher than the highest note of the piano and much higher than what the human ear can detect. A co-author to the study, Per Delsing states “we have opened a new door into the quantum world by talking and listening to atoms. Our long term goal is to harness quantum physics so that we can benefit from its laws, for example in extremely fast computers.”
Another co-author, Martin Gustafsson, from the Columbia University added that “according to the theory, the sound from the atom is divided into quantum particles. Such a particle is the weakest sound that can be detected (by the human ears).”
Although the researchers are working to use quantum sound levels to achieve quantum computing, a director at the University of Maryland’s Joint Quantum Institute, Steve Rolston has warned that “whether it has implications for quantum computing may be too early to tell, but it expands the toolbox for technologies to work with.”