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How the ‘identity agnostic’ neutrino exists in three states all at once

Most objects in the Universe maintain a single identity regardless of the context. Even at the subatomic level, electrons keep the very same mass and charge whether they’re floating freely through interstellar space or part of an atom on Earth. So how then is it that a neutrino can be found in one of three distinctly different ‘flavours’ depending on when and where it’s observed? This brief animation from MinutePhysics investigates how quantum superposition allows neutrinos to seemingly defy logic by oscillating between three different identities without ever committing to one.

Video by MinutePhysics

20 July 2017

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