Physicist Uses Laser Light as Fast True-Random Num
On: 11/29/2011 Views: 50
An Ottawa, Canada physicist is using laser light to create truly random numbers much faster than other methods do, with obvious potential benefits to cryptography:"Sussman's new method, involving pulses of laser light in an Ottawa lab, has the potential to create truly random numbers in large quantities, and fast... Sussman's Ottawa lab uses a pulse of laser light that lasts a few trillionths of a second. His team shines it at a diamond. The light goes in and comes out again, but along the way, it changes... It is changed because it has interacted with quantum vacuum fluctuations, the microscopic flickering of the amount of energy in a point in space... What happens to the light is unknown — and unknowable. Sussman's lab can measure the pulses of laser light that emerge from this mysterious transformation, and the measurements are random in a way that nothing in our ordinary surroundings is. Those measurements are his random numbers."