Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Quantum physics

Indistinguishable from afar

Imprinting a coherent light pulse on the spins of atoms is standard quantum sorcery. Retrieving the same light pulse from a second, distant set of atoms looks rather like black magic. But it, too, is just quantum mechanics.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Figure 1: Distant bounds.


  1. Ginsberg, N. S., Garner, S. R. & Hau, L. V. Nature 445, 623–626 (2007).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Liu, C., Dutton, Z., Behroozi, C. H. & Hau, L. V. Nature 409, 490–493 (2001).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Phillips, D. F., Fleischhauer, A., Mair, A., Walsworth, R. L. & Lukin, M. D. Phys. Rev. Lett. 86, 783–786 (2001).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Fleischhauer, M. & Lukin, M. D. Phys. Rev. Lett. 84, 5094–5097 (2000).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Fleischhauer, M. Indistinguishable from afar. Nature 445, 605–606 (2007).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing