The quantum computer has become two seconds closer to reality

    Mikhail Lukin from the Russian Quantum Center made a breakthrough in building a quantum computer. Scientists have been able to save data for a long time in a quantum computing system - researchers believe that we are one step away from creating a real quantum computer.

    Just six months ago, Lukin told at his lecture in Moscow how far we are from creating computers based on quantum effects, and today the news ahead of our time came from his laboratory. It turned out that the future is already on the verge.

    Lecture at Digital October

    Under the leadership of Lukin, a group of scientists from Harvard University was able to create quantum bits that store information for about 2 seconds. This is about 6 orders of magnitude longer than during previous experiments. A separate feature of the created qubit was that it is able to work at room temperature.

    A quantum bit (or qubit) is the smallest element for storing information in a quantum computer. According to researchers, the Harvard experiment took a step closer to quantum computing systems.

    Most of the existing quantum systems are based on complex and expensive equipment, including installations that cool the system to absolute zero (-273 Celsius). A group of scientists led by Harvard physics professor Mikhail Lukin used laboratory-grown diamonds.

    What we have achieved in terms of control is truly unprecedented ,” commented Lukin. “We got qubit at room temperature. We were able to write information into it and store it for a relatively long time. We believe that this experiment has only technical limitations. That is, it seems quite possible to extend the period of existence of the qubit by a clock. In this case, it becomes possible to implement real quantum computing systems . "

    In addition to quantum computers, Lukin foresees the creation of quantum payment systems that use quantum bits to encode information, and quantum computing networks with a new level of protection against intrusions.

    Mikhail Lukin, Georg Kuksko and Christian Latta in his laboratory.

    " This study is an important step towards creating a practical quantum computer.“, Said Georg Kucsko, one of the members of the research team. “ For the first time, we were able to create a simple system with an acceptable time interval for data storage .”

    The basis for the experiment was found by the Lukin team several years ago, when scientists discovered that defects in laboratory-grown diamonds were defects (nitrogen-substituted vacancies, NV vacancies) possess the properties of individual atoms, in particular, they have spin .. Using a laser setup, scientists have learned to control the spin and recognize its polarization changing with time.

    Scientists directly recorded these data in the carbon-13 isotope, which was able to maintain its state for a long time. However, on the other hand, isolation is a drawback - because it is difficult to "get close" to it. Scientists have found a brilliant solution: they were able to interact with the isotope using neighboring impurities of a different type.

    As a result of this interaction, the state of the carbon atom can be judged by the state of the NV vacancy, and the researchers were able to encode a bit of information into the atom’s spin.

    Encoding information in the back of carbon-13 atoms and reading it using an NV job is just a step on the way to a quantum computer. Before they become practically useful, researchers must determine how to use the quantum property of atoms: the ability to exist in two states simultaneously.

    Michael on the fingers explains the essence of his work

    The ability to be in two states at the same time is a key principle of quantum computers. Unlike traditional computers, which write bits of information in states of zero or one, quantum computers use the properties of atoms to write two values ​​at once.

    By design, this property will allow them to perform several calculations in parallel, which will make them significantly more powerful than traditional computers that perform operations in a specific sequence.

    The head of the scientific group that created the qubit operating at room temperature is MIPT graduate Mikhail Lukin, professor of physics at Harvard University, co-director of the Harvard Center for Quantum Optics, co-director of the Harvard-MIT Center for Ultracold Atoms. Participates in the international advisory board of the Russian Quantum Center, a resident of the Skolkovo Fund.

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