Alchemy: The Hunt for Gold
Alchemy experimented with gunpowder, developed remedies, and researched minerals and salts: many alchemists were some of the universal scholars. For centuries they tried to make valuable gold from base metals such as iron and lead.
You learn in school that their efforts have failed Manon Bischoff In conversation with the spectrum of science »from Detector. Fm-Moderator Mark Zimmer.
One element cannot be converted into another by chemical reaction. This requires atomic physical processes occurring in particle accelerators. Nevertheless, Bischoff points out, the alchemy dream remains among today’s researchers. They try to use tailor-made light pulses to change the properties of molecules, atoms, or even individual light particles, as they wish. They want to use it to modify clothing in such a way that they mimic the properties of another material.
However, unlike ancient alchemy, it is not about converting lead into gold. Rather, the focus of experiments is on the question of how new technologies can be constructed with the help of such control of quantum systems. An example are high-precision sensors that can detect the smallest electromagnetic fields. Besides, an expectation Phenomena like superconductivity Phen To uncover its ultimate secrets.
They have already had their first breakthroughs: by illuminating conductive solids with lasers, quantum physicists have already treated them like an insulator and vice versa. In the podcast, Bischoff explains how these lasers work and what technological developments they can make possible, but also why these experiments are susceptible to interference.
Articles to read: https://detektor.fm/wissen/spektrum-podcast-modern-alchemie