Physicists have just gotten us a little closer to the dream of building objects out of pure light – hello, lightsabers – by figuring out how to join weightless light particles together to form a kind of ‘two-atom molecule’ with its own, strange type of force.
“It’s not a molecule per se, but you can imagine it as having a similar kind of structure,” one of the researchers, Alexey Gorshkov from the University of Maryland in the US said in a press release. “We’re learning how to build complex states of light that, in turn, can be built into more complex objects. This is the first time anyone has shown how to bind two photons a finite distance apart.
“Before you get too excited, the technique is purely theoretical at this stage, but it shows how two light particles – or photons – can travel in waves towards each other before being locked together at just a short distance apart. This would allow them to travel together at all times, with a set distance between them. Source: Physicists figure out how to make ‘molecules’ of pure light