Quantum Brain And Quantum Consciousness

(Last Updated On: October 12, 2019)

What is Quantum consciousness and Quantum Computing?

Quantum Mechanics is considered as the weirdest form of Science. The things explained by quantum mechanics are somehow so strange that it is taken as a myth having no scientific base. According to Scientist Skeptic Lawrence Krauss, “No area of Physics stimulates more nonsense in public areas than Quantum.”

Quantum consciousness is also one of such concepts explained by quantum. Classically we are not able to explain consciousness and science behind the working principles of the mind. But quantum explained the fact by two fundamental theories of Quantum mechanical physics that are –

1. Quantum Entanglement
2. Superposition principle

First, let’s have a look at the first one –

1. Quantum Entanglement

Quantum entanglement is the effect that occurs when two groups of particles interact in such a way that the quantum state of both the particles cannot be explained separately even though they are at larger distance apart.

2. Superposition Principle

The net displacement/response caused by two or more waves is the sum of the individual displacement/response.

Explanation of concept by Roger Penrose and Stuart Hameroff

In the 1990s a Physicist Roger Penrose and an Anesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff proposed a theory named Orchestrated Objective Reduction known as Orch-OR on an individual basis.

According to Eugene Wigner, “Quantum mechanics has something to do with the working of the mind. Wavefunction collapse due to its interaction with consciousness.”

Concept of Penrose – Penrose adopted the same concept and state that consciousness is not a computable process because of wavefunction collapse. He proposed that consciousness can be detectable using space-time geometry and its mathematical understanding.

 Roger Penrose - quantum brain
Roger Penrose

Hameroff’s Idea – Side-by-side Hameroff proposed that Microtubules are the suitable host for quantum mechanical behavior, containing Tubulin protein as their sub-unit. Electrons are delocalized in them and because of their very small spacing, of about 8nm, electrons face entanglement.

Stuart Hameroff - quantum brain
Stuart Hameroff

Explanation of concept – As I explained earlier the concept of entanglement, the single electron and its behavior are not detectable. The concept that they proposed was, “BRAIN ACTS AS QUANTUM COMPUTER.” A computational machine that makes use of quantum mechanical phenomena (like the capacity of particles to be in two places at the same time) to undergo complex calculations. In the brain fibers inside neurons could form the basic units of quantum computations.

Also Read: Quantum Suicide And Immortality

Penrose’s theory was not able to explain how this quantum computing occurred inside the brain. But Hameroff suggested that “small fibrous structures that give cells their structural support – known as Microtubule might be able of carrying out quantum computations.”

What is going to be the benefit of Quantum Brains/Consciousness?

The brain’s most mysterious functions can be understood by quantum computing as the brain can store the data like the way we hold on to long-term memories, or where consciousness, emotions, and awareness comes from. If you are new to the world of quantum computing, the way in which quantum mechanics explain the atomic world when the rules of classical physics no longer acceptable is quite surprising.

The most puzzling thing about quantum computing is that you need to understand the switching between qubits and regular 0s and 1s that are used to store the data.

Here arises a question that what is Qubit? The answer to the question is “Qubit or quantum bit is a basic unit of quantum information.”

The above hypothesis has no experimental proof, yet it is still considered that in near future we may get a device or experimental setup to find out whether the hypothesis of Penrose and Hameroff is valid or not.

Also Read: Quantum Fields (Real or Not)

Krishan Kumar

Krishan Kumar

A Physics Enthusiast, An Entrepreneur and A Motivational Speaker, Krishan Kumar, A multi-talented personality has been portraying the role of a Science Communicator for the past 4 years. He has the utmost passion for Physics. He is truly in fact, a physicist-in-process. He is also the Co-Founder of CosmosNow (India’s First Independent Astronomy Magazine) and Fastika (A Delivery System Startup).

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