Exhibition in Como: “Saying the Unspeakable” to Understanding Quantum Mechanics


Until April 21st in Como, at the Silk Museum, it is possible to immerse yourself in that calm but also mysterious sea of ​​quantum mechanics, that wonderful formal description of the microscopic world devised by one of the greatest scientists of the last century: Werner Karl Heisenberg. In June 1925, the German physicist apparently started a truly radical scientific revolution capable of changing, from a mathematical and phenomenological point of view, the very idea of ​​the possible functioning of nature. A different way of thinking that today remains “incomprehensible” to most, but which actually has various practical applications that humanity uses every day with technology: from quantum supercomputers that process qubits (ie quantum bits, defined by Benjamin Schumacher a unit of quantum information ), modern and refined cryptographic techniques, lasers, up to deep knowledge of molecular biology.

And therefore, for those who want to embark on this “immersive” journey into quantum physics, it is possible to do so today thanks to the third edition of “Saying the unspeakable”, a traveling exhibition that will visit twenty cities, curated in Como by the University of Insubria and the Institute of Photonics and Nanotechnology of the National Research Council. An initiative carried out as part of the three-year Italian project Quantum Weeks aimed at spreading the concepts of quantum physics and technology, involving hundreds of researchers from many research institutions, universities and scientific societies, in fact in twenty cities outside the entire national territory. On Saturday, March 23, in the presence of the leaders of the Museum of Silk, Mariagrazia Sassi, representing the Provincial Administration of Como, the Director of Disat, the Department of Science and High Technologies of Insubria, Michela Perst, from the National Coordinator of the Italian Quantum Weeks, Maria Bondani, who is also a researcher at the Cnr, among others -Ifn and Professor of Physics at the University of Insubria, and Local Manager of the Initiative Alessia Allevi, Associate Professor of the Department of Science and Science. High Technology of the ‘insubre university – the event for this year 2024 has started.

“One of the phenomena explored in the exhibition is the so-called quantum Zeno effect,” he said The Bondans -. The name is inspired by the philosopher Elea from the 5th century BC, who became famous for his paradoxes about the impossibility of movement. Under certain conditions, quantum theory vindicates Zen by predicting that repeated quantum measurements can slow down and even “freeze” the evolution of systems: the quantum arrow would remain stationary”. The exhibition will last in Como until April 21st, but will stop at various locations throughout Italy (such as Catania, Florence, Mantua, Modena, Naples, Pavia, Rome, Turin) to lead visitors to discover the laws of quantum mechanics, both paradoxes. and indispensable for new technology applications using videos, installations, demonstrators, games and artworks. “The exhibition – concludes Bondani – also wants to describe how the apparent paradoxes of quantum theory, which make it so different from our usual way of understanding the world, are in fact the basis of powerful tools for the development of new types of sensors, computers, simulators and measurement protocols. These new technologies are the result of the second quantum revolution that we have been experiencing for several decades“.

The exhibition develops in several in-depth stages. In the first phase, we follow the results that led to the construction of the theory and applications of the first quantum revolution. In the second, the investigation of the postulates of quantum physics is completed with special emphasis on the difference between the measurement of an event in the classical sense and the measurement with a quantum interpretation. In the third, fourth and fifth parts, the visitor is immersed in the concept of quantum systems and related quantum technology applications such as quantum cryptography, quantum computing and quantum simulation.

In addition to the exhibition, Italian Quantum Weeks, in-depth sessions offering educational workshops, sessions of quantum games such as QTris, visits to research laboratories and educational conferences are planned.

In addition to the exhibition, the Italian Quantum Weeks offer educational workshops, sessions of quantum games such as QTris, visits to research laboratories and educational conferences. Among the activities planned in Insubria are the afternoon workshops “Let’s go quantum”, which are scheduled from 15:00 to 17:00 at the Department of Science and High Technologies in via Valleggio 11, in Como: Tuesday 26 March “Quantum computing: quantum algorithms with IBMQ”, Tuesday April 9th ​​“Random Number Generation” and Tuesday April 16th “The Quantum Cryptography Problem”. The Como office is also promoting the conference for schools “How much let’s talk”, a live broadcast on the ItalianQuantumWeeks YouTube channel on Wednesday 3 April at 9:00 am and the quantum creativity competition “Quantum Suggestions”. The exhibition “Saying the unspeakable – the journey to quantum mechanics” is at the Silk Museum at via Castelnuovo 9, in Como until April 21 from Tuesday to Sunday 10:00-13:00 and 14:00-18:00, with free admission and the possibility guided tours with Insubria researchers and students. For reservations write to quantumweeks@gmail.com, for more information www.quantumweeks.it.


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