Researchers say that light particles, or photons, could be transferred over large interstellar distances without losing their quantum nature. Thus, scientists hunting for extraterrestrial signals may potentially search for quantum transmissions.
Scientists are currently developing Earth-based quantum communication, a system that sends information using quantum particles and has the potential to be more secure than conventional or classical communication. Arjun Berera, a theoretician of physics, speculates that intelligent extraterrestrials, if they exist, may have embraced quantum communication.
Decoherence, the process whereby a coherent particle loses its quantumness when it interacts with its environment, is one of the main challenges to quantum communication. According to Berera, “Quantum states are often thought of as being very delicate, but if there’s any type of exterior contact, you sort of destroy that state.”
Because the average density of matter in space is significantly lower than it is on Earth, one could anticipate that particles will be able to travel further before losing their coherent state. Because of this, Berera and Jaime Calderón Figueroa, a theoretical physicist at the University of Edinburgh, performed calculations to determine how far light, and more specifically X-rays, might travel into interstellar space without being damaged.
According to the findings of the researchers, X-ray photons have the ability to travel beyond than the Milky Way, maybe traveling hundreds of thousands of light-years or even further.
Berera and Calderón Figueroa investigated several search tactics in light of the findings in light of their hunt for E.T.’s quantum messages. Quantum teleportation, in which the characteristics of one particle can be transmitted to another in a different location, is one of the potential modes of communication that researchers are looking for. Because the technology requires both quantum and classical communications, the researchers might search for signals that occur simultaneously in order to discover any quantum missives sent by extraterrestrials.