Time crystal

2017 Time crystal

The book of science

Tom Sharp

Frank Wilczek, Krzysztof Sacha, Norman Yao, Christopher Monroe, Mikhail Lukin physics Time crystal

Time crystal

Crystals repeat a pattern in space but most do not change over time. Time crystals repeat patterns in both space and time. For a while, scientists thought time crystals couldn’t exist. But now we know they can break time-translation symmetry by having a repeated motion without providing kinetic energy.

Inherent motion

Electrons and photons have inherent motion. Stop a photon and it ceases to exist, but transfers its energy to something else, another particle, another form of energy. Inside a proton, under immense pressure, quarks and gluons achieve an equilibrium. On the quantum scale, laws of thermodynamics are questionable.

A word about rhyming

In my mind I find a rime is not a rhyme— it’s a homonym— but a sneeze is a freeze and a half-integer spin is thicker than skin, limited by what I admit.

Some crystals are not symmetrical with respect to rotation or mirroring. The idea with time crystals is that some are not symmetrical with translations in time.

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