Chinese scientists achieve breakthrough in quantum computing
Scientists in China have made a breakthrough in quantum computing by achieving the entanglement of multiple ultracold atoms. The researchers from the University of Science and Technology of China, Tsinghua University, and Fudan University were able to entangle eight and 10 atoms in two-dimensional blocks and one-dimensional chains, respectively, using new experimental devices and methods. Entanglement of atoms is essential for quantum algorithms and can lead to faster and more powerful computers. This development opens up possibilities for practical processors for quantum computers.
Scientists in China have achieved a significant breakthrough in quantum computing by successfully entangling multiple ultracold atoms. The study, conducted by researchers from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC), Tsinghua University, and Fudan University, marks a crucial step towards developing practical processors for quantum computers.
Previous studies could only entangle two atoms at a time, but the Chinese team devised new experimental devices and methods that enabled them to entangle eight and ten atoms in two-dimensional blocks and one-dimensional chains, respectively. This development is a crucial advancement towards preparing and manipulating large-scale atom entanglement.
Entangling atoms is a vital component in quantum algorithms and can lead to the development of faster and more powerful computers. For example, a quantum computer with 10 quantum bits, or qubits, is equivalent to the memory capacity of 2^10 bits in a conventional computer, and its computing power increases exponentially with the number of entangled particles.
How was it done?
The researchers utilised optical lattices, which are networks of laser beams used for trapping atoms, as a promising platform for their experiment. However, they faced the challenge of entangling more than two atoms simultaneously to achieve scalability.
To overcome this obstacle, the USTC team, led by Pan Jianwei, developed new instruments and technologies, including an optical superlattice, a quantum gas microscope, and three digital micromirror devices. These innovations allowed them to create and verify the entanglement of multiple atoms at a resolution of a single atom.
Overall, this study represents a significant advancement in the field of quantum computing. The successful entanglement of multiple ultracold atoms in a laser trap is a crucial step towards practical processors for quantum computers. The researchers believe that their work provides essential building blocks for scalable and practical quantum computing.
What are its implications?
This breakthrough has wide-ranging implications for various fields that require high computational power, such as data analysis, optimisation, and cryptography. It may also contribute to advancements in materials science, drug discovery, and climate modelling.
It is worth noting that Pan Jianwei and his team have been studying optical-lattice-based ultracold atomic systems since 2010. This research builds upon their previous achievements, including entangling over 1,000 pairs of rubidium atoms in previous experiments. However, their earlier work lacked precise control of individual atomic qubits and an effective method to confirm the entanglement state of multiple atoms. The new study addresses these limitations and paves the way for further progress in the field.