Bell test

Experiments to test Bell's theorem in quantum mechanics / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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A Bell test, also known as Bell inequality test or Bell experiment, is a real-world physics experiment designed to test the theory of quantum mechanics in relation to Albert Einstein's concept of local realism. Named for John Stewart Bell, the experiments test whether or not the real world satisfies local realism, which requires the presence of some additional local variables (called "hidden" because they are not a feature of quantum theory) to explain the behavior of particles like photons and electrons. To date, all Bell tests have found that the hypothesis of local hidden variables is inconsistent with the way that physical systems behave.[1]

According to Bell's theorem, if nature actually operates in accord with any theory of local hidden variables, then the results of a Bell test will be constrained in a particular, quantifiable way. If a Bell experiment is performed and the results are not thus constrained, then the hypothesized local hidden variables cannot exist. Such results would support the position that there is no way to explain the phenomena of quantum mechanics in terms of a more fundamental description of nature that is more in line with the rules of classical physics.

Many types of Bell tests have been performed in physics laboratories, often with the goal of ameliorating problems of experimental design or set-up that could in principle affect the validity of the findings of earlier Bell tests. This is known as "closing loopholes in Bell tests".[1]

Bell inequality violations are also used in some quantum cryptography protocols, whereby a spy's presence is detected when Bell's inequalities cease to be violated.