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New Quantum Processor Brings Quantum Computing Closer to Reality

The key to quantum technologies may have just been unlocked, thanks to this quantum processor.

Colin AboyApril 20th 2016

Quantum Breakthrough

Quantum computing has the potential to bring us great leaps forward in relation to our computing technologies, at least compared to many of today’s standards; however, such computers have yet to be fabricated, as they represent monumental engineering challenges (though we have made much progress in the past ten years).

And now, with RMIT’s new quantum processor, quantum computing may not be all that far from reach.

For the first time, a research team at RMIT University demonstrated the routing of quantum information to different locations through the perfect state transfer of an entangled quantum bit (qubit) on the processor that they developed, paving the way to the “quantum data bus.”

The study is published in Nature Communications, entitled Experimental Perfect State Transfer of an Entangled Photonic Qubit.

The perfect state transfer of an entangled pair. Credit: RMIT University

Successful Data Transfer

Ultimately, data transfer is an important step in computing, which in the quantum realm, is problematic due to the inherent fragility of quantum states. But experts assert that the perfect state transfer may be a promising technique for data routing on a larger scale, and to that end, these results were highly anticipated, and come after more than a decade of research in the field.

Dr. Albert Peruzzo, Director of RMIT’s Quantum Photonics Laboratory, stated that, to relocate qubits between far locations, their devices uses highly optimized quantum tunneling. Full scale quantum computers will make use of possibly up to a billion qubits, all essentially interconnected.

By comparison, digital data consists of bits which are only one of two states, the binary one and zero, while the qubit is a superposition of multiple states. This makes quantum processors unimaginably more powerful than the current microprocessors we have.

“It could make the critical difference for discovering new drugs, developing a perfectly secure quantum Internet and even improving facial recognition,” said Purezzo.

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