This is a summary from Physics World of the paper: L J Wang et al. 2000 Nature 406 277-- "Wang and colleagues begin by using a third continuous-wave laser to confirm that there are two peaks in the gain spectrum and that the refractive index does indeed change rapidly with wavelength in between. Next they send a 3.7-microsecond long laser pulse into the caesium cell, which is 6 centimetres long, and show that, at the correct wavelength, it emerges from the cell 62 nanoseconds sooner than would be expected if it had travelled at the speed of light. 62 nanoseconds might not sound like much, but since it should only take 0.2 nanoseconds for the pulse to pass through the cell, this means that the pulse has been travelling at 310 times the speed of light. Moreover, unlike previous superluminal experiments, the input and output pulse shapes are essentially the same."
I realise that the velocity of light in a medium is comprised of the phase velocity, the group velocity, and the front velocity. While the group velocity can exceed the value of c in a vacuum, the front velocity is not supposed to. The way this sounds, the front velocity is exceeding c in a vacuum by 310 times.
blue dot=phase velocity, green=group, red=front (wiki)
The wavepacket seems to exit the cell well before it enters, but the negative refractive index "forward shifts" the leading edge of the pulse. It is argued that although this is superluminal, information cannot be transmitted faster than c. Gauthier and Stenner introduced a jump discontinuity into the waveform.Its max speed was c Here is a popular account from NewScientist . What if you used one photon? What if the photon itself were the information and not a carrier?