quantum jump


: an abrupt transition (as of an electron, an atom, or a molecule) from one discrete energy state to another

Examples of quantum jump in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web For example, take the familiar concept of a quantum jump. Paul Sutter, Ars Technica, 13 Feb. 2023 At such fine scales, the quantum jump appeared less like an abrupt jerk and more like a smooth, continuous transition from one energy state to another. Stephen Ornes, Discover Magazine, 24 Dec. 2019 The notion of a quantum jump originated in 1913, when Danish physicist Niels Bohr introduced the revolutionary idea that electrons only circle the nucleus of atoms in discrete orbits, or energy levels. Stephen Ornes, Discover Magazine, 24 Dec. 2019 The experiment confirms that during a quantum jump, the particle really does exist in two states at once. Stephen Ornes, Discover Magazine, 24 Dec. 2019 Did Tyson do a quantum jump to conclusions without a physical exam or Santa’s medical records? Bruce Y. Lee, Forbes, 25 Dec. 2021 His dissertation upended Bohr’s quantum jump theory proposed over 100 years ago. Paul Smith-Goodson, Forbes, 26 Apr. 2021 The connection can be weak, in which case a quantum jump can also be predictable through the pause in clicks from the qubit’s side activity, in the way used by the Yale experiment. Eleni Petrakou, Scientific American, 29 Dec. 2020 The Uk can make a quantum jump to a square two squares above and one square to the left or right. Quanta Magazine, 6 Feb. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'quantum jump.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1926, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of quantum jump was in 1926

Dictionary Entries Near quantum jump

Cite this Entry

“Quantum jump.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quantum%20jump. Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

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