Piece description from the artist
Quantum Mechanical tunneling happens when, According to Classical Mechanics there’s a barrier or wall. The energy to hop over the wall is more than is possessed by any of the particles blocked by the wall (or barrier). So in Classical Terms, those particles should be stuck on their side of the wall. In Quantum Mechanics, there’s also an Uncertainty factor, which tend to soften up Classical Walls, allowing some of the particles to leak or “tunnel” through the barrier. This idea was used to create the Scanning Tuneling Microscope, which could attain atomic resolution on atomically flat conductive samples.
Other scanning probe microscopies followed, but most of the in plane atomic resolution seen for the non-tunneling varieties has been well debunked.
In the painting “Tunneling Regime”, mica and other textural materials are used to create a granular space for the quantum tunneling particles, and the particle waves tunneling through are swirling helicoids. To be accurate, the Planck length granularity of space time is much much smaller than particles that can tunnel, and the waveforms aren’t accurate either. It is after all Art, and not a Physics illustration.
Dr. Regina Valluzzi has an extensive scientific background in nanotechnology and biophysics. She has been a scientist in the chemical industry, a green chemistry researcher, a research professor at the engineering school at Tufts, a start-up founder engaged in technology commercialization, and a start-up and commercialization consultant.
Even during periods of intense activity as a scientist, Dr. Valluzzi has always held a strong interest in the visual arts and in visual information. While she majored in Materials Science at MIT, she also obtained a second degree in music and a minor in visual studies. Visual arts have managed to permeate her technical work; during her Ph.D in Polymer Science and Engineering at UMass Amherst, she completed a thesis that required advanced electron microscopy, image analysis, and theoretical data modeling. These experiences provided the visual insight and information that now influences much of her artwork.
Dr. Valluzzi’s work has been included in private collections across the US, UK, Germany, Canada, Japan, Netherlands, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Dubai and Malta, and in the corporate collection of "Seyfarth Shaw" Boston law offices around Boston. She has a selection of pieces on loan to the MIT Materials Science and Engineering Department as indoor public art. Her accomplishments include having published thirty articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals, having made several scientific patents, having been a subject matter expert for an encyclopedia chapter, and having been invited to speak at science talks across the US, Europe, and Japan.
Her newsletter is a good source of ongoing information: http://eepurl.com/daiLQ