Scientists have accurately calculated the time it takes for light rays to pass through two hydrogen atoms. For the first time, the shortest time counted up to ‘zeptosecond’.
This research on measuring such a short time using X-rays has been published in the journal Science. Professor of Physics at Gothenburg University in Germany The research was led by Reinhard Derner. Time is accurately calculated with the help of X-rays through the particle accelerator ‘Dots Electron Synchrotron’ in Hamburg. Earlier in 2016, an attempt was made to measure in zeptoseconds using laser beams.
How to count Zeptosecond?
An atom of hydrogen is formed from one electron and one proton. Scientists chose a hydrogen molecule to measure time, that is, two hydrogen atoms. They obtained photons with enough energy to collide with the electrons in the molecule through X-rays. When the actual photon was released on the molecule, it collided with one electron and collided with another. Just like we make ‘bread’ by throwing horizontal stones on the surface of the water in the pond. In the same way, a photon collided with an electron of hydrogen.
The resulting ‘interference pattern’ (like a loaf of bread on water) was measured with a microscope called ‘Cold Target Recoil Ion Momentum Spectroscopy’. The physics of the time it takes for a photon to move from the first atom to the second was calculated based on the information. So it was 247 lepto seconds. This phenomenon can also be used to measure the speed of light in an atom.
Reference: E-Paper Sakal