Real Science Radio host Bob Enyart discusses the growing field of quantum biology with Brian, an information systems guy with one of the world's major institutions who earned a double-major in both mechanical engineering and physics from Iowa State University. This engineer argues that some of the extraordinary abilities of biological organisms go beyond what seems possible from standard chemistry and physics. Quantum mechanics, astoundingly, enables the navigational abilities of the Arctic Tern to fly halfway around the globe and of Monarch butterflies to migrate from Canada to Mexico. The startling, often sub-atomic, quantum world of the two-slit experiment and of wave/particle duality, of quantum entanglement, superposition, coherence and quantum tunneling, has disrupted the already wildly complex field of biology. Evidence is mounting that the most bewildering abilities of living organisms come courtesy of the Designer using quantum effects to accomplish what otherwise would seem to be impossible!
Hear the sequel to today's program at rsr.org/qb2.
Correction: The largest molecule to date used successfully in a two-slit experiment was not a 100-atom molecule as Bob stated in his introduction, but experimenters have used a synthetic carbon-based molecule of 810 atoms (Eibenberger, et al., 2013, arxiv.org) to produce a quantum interference pattern!