Scientists have developed the fastest man-made rotor in the world, which they believe will help them study quantum mechanics. At more than 60 billion revolutions per minute, this machine is more than 100,000 times faster than a high-speed dental drill.
The scientists synthesized a tiny dumbbell from silica and levitated it in a high vacuum using a laser. The laser can work in a straight line or in a circle – when it is linear, the dumbbell vibrates, and when it is circular, the dumbbell spins.
A spinning dumbbell functions as a rotor, and a vibrating dumbbell functions like an instrument for measuring tiny forces and torques, known as a torsion balance.
At more than 60 billion revolutions per minute, this machine is more than 100,000 times faster than a high-speed dental drill.
With this, scientists will be able to study things like quantum mechanics and the properties of the vacuum. Understanding these mechanisms is an essential goal for the modern generation of physics.