Aaron Douglas O’Connell (born March 5, 1981 in Allentown, Pennsylvania) is an American experimental quantum physicist. While working under Andrew N. Cleland and John M. Martinis at the University of California, Santa Barbara, he created the world’s first quantum machine. In particular, he was able to transfer the quantum state of a superconducting quantum bit, a device used in quantum computation, to the motional state of a macroscopic mechanical resonator. His measurements of the quantum machine constitute the first direct observations of quantized behavior in the motion of a visible object and led the journal Science to honor his work as the “Breakthrough of the Year” of 2010.
Your connections to all the things around you literally defines who you are. And this is the profound weirdness of quantum mechanics.
- Breakthrough of the Year: Bridging the Quantum and the Classical Worlds