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Super-sized atoms can be used as a receiver to stream live video

When excited by lasers, a tiny glass container filled with rubidium atoms can act as a receiver for streamed video signals

Physics 17 May 2022

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A video of the research team was streamed with rubidium atoms acting as a receiver

V.T Neylon, Rydberg Atom Project at NIST

Super-sized rubidium atoms have been used as a receiver to stream live colour video and video games. This atomic system could be used to make small and versatile communications devices that don’t rely on electronics.

When an atom absorbs energy and gets excited, its electrons start orbiting the nucleus at a greater distance, increasing the diameter of the atom. These stretched-out atoms are known as a Rydberg atoms, and their electrons are sensitive to …