Scientists use microwave and polarized laser technology to successfully read and write qubits

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has taken a step forward in the study of quantum computers, which successfully combine microwaves and polarized lasers to read and write individual quantum bits (qubits). The researchers also said that the prototype technology developed will be applied to a working quantum computer.

"We use microwaves for reading and writing, and polarized lasers are used to select the atoms that will be read or written," said Trey Porto of the Joint Quantum Institute at NIST.

Quantum computers are said to help solve many of today's problems. By encoding the qubits, it can represent either 0 or 1 -- the principle is called superposition; therefore, quantum computers can omit many of the steps required by a typical computer and continuously filter every possible computed value.

The challenge of quantum computer technology is how to control the processing steps of such a computer without disturbing the superimposed state that makes the qubit useful. This is especially tricky for adjacent qubits, because whenever a single qubit is read or written, it disturbs the state of neighboring quantum dots.

NIST researchers claim to have found a way to solve the above problem by using the accuracy of the polarized laser beam to select atoms; this method allows individual qubits to be read and written by the microwave without disturbing the state of adjacent qubits.

The researchers placed a single rubidium atom in an optical lattice made of a laser beam to store the qubits under quantum energy states. Nian Yuanzi can produce 8 different energy states, and NIST's research team chose two "memory" states to represent 0 and 1.

The research team then chose the second group of "control" energy states as the gates of the previous "memory" group; and by alternating the qubits in the "memory" and "control" groups, the researchers were able to The reading and writing of individual qubits is performed without disturbing the adjacent qubits.

"Using microwaves can control the conversion of helium atoms between memory and control states;" Porto said: "Polarization lasers are used to select the atoms to be converted. The microwave pulses used to convert the state of the helium atoms allow individual control of individual defects." Atom. "NIST is currently trying to apply this technology to real quantum computers.

Isolation and control of germanium atoms (red) with a laser lattice (blue)

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