When fluid dynamics mimic quantum mechanics
This is a followup on this now ancient post; http://goo.gl/ZNafz
A team of MIT researchers, in collaboration with Yves Couder and his colleagues report that they have produced the fluidic analogue of another classic quantum experiment, in which electrons are confined to a circular “corral” by a ring of ions. In the new experiments, bouncing drops of fluid mimicked the electrons’ statistical behavior with remarkable accuracy.
This drop of fluid, bouncing across a vibrating fluid bath, propelled by waves produced by its own collisions “is the first pilot-wave system discovered and gives insight into how rational quantum dynamics might work, were such a thing to exist.”
The waves generated by the bouncing droplet reflected off the corral walls, confining the droplet within the circle and interfering with each other to create complicated patterns. As the droplet bounced off the waves, its motion appeared to be entirely random, but over time, it proved to favor certain regions of the bath over others. It was found most frequently near the center of the circle, then, with slowly diminishing frequency, in concentric rings whose distance from each other was determined by the wavelength of the pilot wave.
The statistical description of the droplet’s location is analogous to that of an electron confined to a circular quantum corral and has a similar, wavelike form.
A New Wave; http://goo.gl/9bhtYo