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An Israeli-led collaboration has used atom-chip technology to build a magnet-based interferometer. The collaboration’s research, which combines aspects of two famous physics experiments from the past, reveals that the division of particle spins into two populations – as observed by Otto Stern and Walther Gerlach a century ago – involves pure quantum states. In the future, the new interferometer could be used to investigate quantum gravity as well as theories about a possible fifth force of nature.

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