Quantum physics: Hot and cold at the same time

9 abril 2015

Temperature is a statistical concept. Very small systems, consisting of a small number of particles, are not usually described statistically. Scientists have now measured how quantum systems reach a state with well defined statistical properties — and surprisingly, they found out that quantum systems can have several temperatures at once. The connection between small quantum systems and large systems obeying the laws of classical physics is one of the big open questions in physics.