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Anton Zeilinger
Of Cats and Entanglement: From Schrödinger to Quantum Information.


In his seminal paper published 1935 in Die Naturwissenschaften, Erwin Schrödinger both proposed his famous cat-paradox and coined the notion of entanglement. Both turned out to be starting points for interesting experimental research programs flourishing today. In the talk, I will present recent results on quantum interference of macromolecules and I will discuss the question from an experimentalist's point of view: for how large and hot molecules one can expect to observe quantum interference. I will also show how important the role of entanglement is in various recent experiments, particularly in quantum communication.

There, verification of such phenomena as high fidelity teleportation of entanglement and entanglement purification point into the direction of possible long-distance quantum communication.



Professor Anton Zeilinger and his group - one of the world’s leading experimental quantum physics research groups – have realized in experiment many fundamental predictions of quantum theory and so proved their amazing consequences for our view of the world. These experimental realizations have also laid the foundation for completely new forms of technology, such as fields like quantum cryptography, quantum computation and quantum information processing.  Most recently it has led to a new understanding of quantum mechanics.


His group’s major current achievements include the world’s first quantum teleportation (1997) and the first realization of quantum cryptography based on quantum entanglement (1999). His work is to a large extent an application of quantum entanglement, the astonishing feature of quantum physics that Albert Einstein had called “spooky action at a distance”. 


The group’s quantum interference experiments with "buckyball" molecules in 1999 (whose shapes resemble the geodesic domes designed by R. Buckminster Fuller), so far the largest objects to have demonstrated quantum behavior, have attracted attention in the scientific community. The investigation of quantum properties with objects of increasing complexity extends the limit between the quantum and the classical world.   


Anton Zeilinger, born 1945 in Austria, has held professorships at Universities in Munich, Vienna, Innsbruck, Melbourne, at MIT and the Collége de France. Among his many awards and prizes are an Honorary Professorship at the University of Science and Technology of China and the Senior Humboldt Fellow Prize of the Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung. He is a member of the German Order Pour le Mérite and of the Berlin-Brandenburg and the Austrian Academies of Science. Currently, he is Director of the Institute of Experimental Physics at the University of Vienna.


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