Science | DOI: 10.1145/2380656.2380662
Three breakthrough experiments involving photons have
extended coherence times and indicated scalable production.
˜ 1 inch
Harnessing the properties of photons is assumed to be one of the fundamental routes to the creation of vi- able quantum computing
architectures. Those architectures will,
among other features, need to maintain coherence, or a stable quantum
bit (qubit) state, long enough for the algorithm to complete in the coherence
time, which may require error correction to enable such completion and
reliability; a fabrication process that
allows carryover from today’s mass
manufacturing process of integrated
circuits; and nodes that are identical in
construction and capabilities in order
to scale successfully.
COURTESY OF IBm RESEARCH
Recent experimental results in harnessing or stabilizing photons from
IBM’s research facility in New York; the
University of Waterloo, the University
of Toronto, and the University of Innsbruck; and the Max Planck Institute of
Quantum Optics have addressed these
fundamental conditions in a promising fashion. The methods used in the
experiments offer the promise of possible future applications for a quantum
Internet, or quantum network, and
quantum key distribution.
ibm’s superconducting qubit device contains a qubit, about 1mm in length, suspended in the
center of the cavity on a sapphire chip. the cavity is formed by closing the two halves.
cavities and coherence times
Two of the projects—an IBM experi-
ment examining superconducting qu-
bits and the Max Planck experiment
examining how best to preserve quan-
tum state during transport—yielded
a similar finding although examining
very disparate areas: Coherence times
and control over quantum elements
were improved by employing cavities
to generate or preserve essential qual-
ities of those elements.