Essay Sample on Development and Ethical Issues in Quantum Mechanics

Published: 2023-07-10
Essay Sample on Development and Ethical Issues in Quantum Mechanics
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Physics Ethical dilemma Social responsibility Social issue
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1834 words
16 min read

For many years now, various experts and analysts have been exploring conceptual and ethical issues in the field of science and technology and how they interact with society at large. Concerns are to make sure that advancement in science only happens for the greater good. Therefore this paper focuses on the ethical issue encountered when physics is applied, especially in the field of quantum technologies. According to MRC senior Scientist, Abdallah Daar, studying and understanding the ethical issues would provide a more elaborate framework for the development of project planning and implementation of these ethical issues. At the same time, it will help flatten the curve for the potential occurrence of the adverse negative impact of technology on society and the community. But before the matter diverts out of control, it is time that all stakeholders join in the discussions concerning the involvement of quantum technology in our daily lives. Therefore, a debate on the implications of this new technology on society should be taken in-depth, especially between specialist researchers, governments, social scientists, industries, and ethicists.

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Theoretical Physics and Quantum theories

Copenhagen Interpretation

The quantum theory is quickly changing from mere theory to a threat in new innovation in science, government, and industry. Various researches on areas on quantum technologies like computing, quantum sensing, quantum cryptography, and quantum communication are rapidly increasing, and becoming extensively applied commercially in different sectors. The government and large corporates exert effort to further level up the research and development in this area. However, the inevitable growth of quantum technology has sparked up the different societal debate as many individuals show to be less comfortable on the technology due to its potential to cause disastrous effects. As scholars and scientist keeps assessing the impact of the technology on the people, society, science, and in industrialization. Therefore due to the increased concerns, critics have raised on whether the theory should progress further towards applications. Despite the emergence of campaigns that question the development of quantum theory, the government has been quick in joining via their strategic visions, subsidies, and funding schemes.

Max Planck initially developed the quantum theory, a German physicist dating back in the year 1900, whose main intention was to further explore the emission of radiation from the hot black body as failures of classical mechanics. The development of the theory of quantum physics has been accompanied by two great discoveries ever made. Firstly, the idea of special relativity developed by Einstein in 1905 which mathematically corrects the equations in classical dynamics if the speed of matter become compared to that of light, and secondly, quantum mechanics which provides a more accurate expression of the behavior of macroscopic system like the movement of atoms around the nucleus. However, the Copenhagen interpretation of the quantum theory is far the best theory ever developed in quantum physics. The irony of this principle with respect to anthropology is that some of its parts are considered less empirical and highly speculative as compared to humanistic anthropology. Various physicist emphases that reality analyzed in experimental form prove to be rock solid.

The interpretation was an initial general attempt to clearly understand the confusing world of atoms. According to Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics, answer to this confusing puzzle is only possible if the quantum state should not be viewed as an explanation of a physical system but rather the role of the quantum state should act as an overview of what to expect if measurements are made on the system.

It is experimentally known that Copenhagen's interpretation is the product of the logical positivism that thrived in Europe. The logical positivists stated that only meaningful content of the theory is used up in the predictions. In addition, further speculation into the reality of the world that gives these measurements is quite meaningless. In contradiction to this interpretation of physics about the world, this is considered excessive speculative theorizing or in more terms as an ironic science since it creates assertions which are closely akin to literary criticism than conventional science.

However, Bohr's views are generally varying Heisenberg. Moreover, Bohr was happy to prove that the micro-world in real and cannot be proved. However, Bohr was one of the scientists that had less to say about the micro-world. From these views, it true to state that the fundamentals of physical theories fail to describe the world. However, the Copenhagen interpretation has various challenges. First, the foundation of quantum mechanics is glued to the ability to explain the outcomes of interference experiments in tiny particles like electrons, hence, and Bohr's idea contradicts this statement. And secondly, Bohr's beliefs lie between the microscopic worlds described by the ambiguous classical concepts. To continue, since the macroscopic objects are derived out of the microscopic components, it seems that the macroscopic objects must conform to the laws of quantum mechanics as well. Therefore, many physicists focus on theorizing about situations that are remote in both space and time and might not exist in reality.

Many-Worlds Interpretation

Later in 1957, Hugh Everett found a radically new method of interpreting the quantum theory. Hugh's intention was to take quantum physics as descriptive and universal as possible; hence, a quantum state is a simpler model of the physical system under study. From the theory, macroscopic systems are described in the same way as microscopic ones. Therefore, this immediately solves Bohr's contradicting idea that had cut between the micro and the macro worlds; hence, the explanation in terms of particle interface is retained in this case. An immediate challenge like realist theory interpretation of the quantum state is the outcomes of the measurement in quantum mechanics.

To continue, Everett suggests that the measurements are modeled quantum mechanically. Therefore, it is by no means that both the measuring instruments and human observers accept a general quantum mechanics description, put it in some other way gives that the theory applies to all types of material objects. In context to the many-worlds interpretation, each physical outcome of these measurements occurs in a specific branch of a quantum state, but only as one of a particular branch of the state, therefore, a particular observer can only see on the outcome. The main merit of the many world interpretation is that it is scientifically proven to be a realist interpretation. Its incredulity is that people and other objects are continuously branching into copies. Also, the branching of people results in philosophical difficulties in identity and probability. There is, however, worry that the many-world theory, especially on the ontological situations of the worlds. It has been said that then postulation of the theory is ontologically profligate.

Therefore, consensuses have identified worlds as being different entities, just like objects like tables and chairs. From this idea, many-worlds interpretation mainly involves no entities away from the represented quantum state. There also exists a residual worry that the number of branches highlighted above depends on mathematical choices on how to best represent a particular quantum state. Therefore, physicists conjecture and focus on only what is happening on a tiny scale, a micro realm which is the furthest place in the universe were human to aspire to reach. However, for an anthropologist to utilize these complex principles, there is a need to understand both what a scientific explanation entails and the prevailing elements for doing science.

Influence of Quantum Theory on World War II

The development of this theory had various effects on WW 2. A brief letter from Adolf Hitler dropping the father of quantum mechanics, Max Born from German University, was recently unveiled as part of an exhibition at Cambridge University. He was a teacher to Heisenberg, who was conducted research on nuclear weapons at the start of world war two. The truth of how far German physics had reached with the work toward the development of the atomic bomb was kept a secret to the Nazi leaders. In context to the account of the nuclear research, physicist Werner Heisenberg kept confidential information a secret to the Nazi leaders on how to build the bomb. Heisenberg described how, when a sphere of uranium could cause a chain reaction. However, some of these physicists exploited their knowledge in making destructive warheads. In the context of the historical events of the world war, scientific principles can be viewed as organized knowledge. In addition, it is more elaborate to think of the field of science as an object and process. Therefore science should be a method of investigation of better ways to improve human life and not to destroy it. Balancing this is usually very hard; for instance, during world war two, Science was used by a physicist as an analytical method for testing theories without foreshadowing the damage that may result.

Applications of Quantum Physics Technology

The theory of quantum entanglement is the most applied theory in quantum information, communication, and computation. The quantum of entanglement is linked to being the background behind the development of the new and powerful quantum computation and communication as compared to traditional classical computation and communication. The theory of quantum entanglement has been used practically until 1993. Therefore, the knowledge of this theory can enable the improvement and evolution of human life. In simple terms, this application puts humans closer to the future.

Quantum Computing and Communication

Experts state the invention of quantum computing could completely transform the world. It could change medicine, artificial intelligence, break encryption, and enhance communication. Various multibillion companies like IBM are have diverted most of their resources in building more efficient quantum computers. The ordinary computers are infused with chips that use bites, which are like small switches, which during operation can in the off position, which is represented by number zero but are assigned numbers one in the on position. Every technology around us, ranging from apps, pictures, or even websites are composed of millions of bits ranging from ones to zeroes. Therefore, this has proved to work great in many things, but it does not give a clear picture of how the universe works since, in reality, things are not always off and on, but uncertain makes it relatively impossible to predict certain things.

What makes quantum computers special is that instead of bits, they use qubits. This means that they are not always on and off but in a superposition, which means there exist both on and off at the same time or in between the two states. In simple terms, superposition is like spinning a coin; therefore, the unit it stops, you can get either a head or a tail; hence, this is what makes quantum computers powerful. To elaborate further, if am ordinary computer is requested to give way out of a complex maze, it will try every possible path at a time canceling the failed attempts until it finds the right path. However, a quantum computer can look through the entire outcome at once, shortening the search. Many researchers and scientists do not fully get how this works, but this is the realm of quantum computing.

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