Einstein predicted it in 1905: light can behave as a wave and a particle!
No experiment has been able to show light as both a particle and a wave — until now. Researchers in Switzerland have captured a photo of light, as if in the wild like a National Geographic sighting, as both a wave and a particle! Amazing!
The scientists used a new experimental technique that uses electrons to capture the light’s movement.
To acquire this incredible photo, the researchers shot laser pulses at a nonowire. The wavelengths of light moved in two different directions. When the waves ran into each other, they look liked a wave standing still, which is a particle.
In order to see how the waves were galavanting, the researchers shot a beam of electrons at the nanowire, like dropping dye in a river to see the currents. The particles inside the light wave changed the electrons’ speed. That technique enabled the researchers to capture an image at the split-second moment the waves met.
“This experiment demonstrates that, for the first time ever, we can film quantum mechanics – and its paradoxical nature – directly,” said Fabrizio Carbone, one of the authors of the study, in a press release.