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Indian origin researcher discovers fifth state of matter from home

Dr. Amruta Gadge from the Quantum Systems and Devices Laboratory

Sussex (England), May 28 (UITV): Issac Newton worked at home during a pandemic during his time, and discovered the theory of gravity. This may not be the bubonic plague, but the new novel coronavirus has forced everyone inside, and an Indian-origin researcher has found a way to best utilize her time - by discovering the fifth state of matter.

Dr. Amruta Gadge from the Quantum Systems and Devices Laboratory successfully created a Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC) at the University of Sussex facilities, not at a lab, but in her living room.

This may be the first time that BEC has been created remotely in a lab that did not have one before. The research team believe the achievement could provide a blueprint for operating quantum technology in inaccessible environments such as space, finds a Phys.org release.

Peter Krüger, Professor of Experimental Physics at the University of Sussex, in an interview to Lab News, said "We believe this may be the first time that someone has established a BEC remotely in a lab that didn't have one before. We are all extremely excited that we can continue to conduct our experiments remotely during lockdown, and any possible future lockdowns."

Dr. Gadge, daughter of Physics teacher, is a Research Fellow In Quantum Physics And Technologies at the University of Sussex, could make the complicated calculations then optimising and running the sequence, by accessing the lab computers remotely from her home. She also continued: “The Bose Einstein Condensate has been achieved in the lab in 1995 in the US. And there has been a Nobel Prize (for that work). So, BEC is not new, but you have to understand the effort that is required to achieve this Condensate given that the theory was developed in 1920s and the first time they were able to achieve it in the lab was in 1995…. But now what’s new is that we are able to do it remotely.”

The Mumbai-born physicist stays two miles away from the lab where she works. She reportedly used the technology on her computer to control lasers and radio waves and create the BEC.

"The process has been a lot slower than if I had been in the lab as the experiment is unstable and I've had to give 10-15 minutes of cooling time between each run. This is obviously not as efficient and way more laborious to do manually because I've not been able to do systematic scans or fix the instability like I could working in the lab," she said.

This may just be the model other scientists and in fact, everyone else around the world will have to slowly apply as the cure to the Covid-19 virus may still be far away.