Scientists have discovered how the performance of a quantum computer can be affected by its surrounding environment. The study, published in the latest issue of the journal Science, will help engineers to better understand how to integrate quantum components into a standard office computer – moving us one step closer to a future of quantum computing.
The collaborative team from the London Centre for Nanotechnology, University College London (UCL), the Paul Scherrer Institute/ETH in Switzerland and the Universities of Chicago and Copenhagen, have shown how its environment can radically alter the behaviour of a quantum computer, an effect which is not present for conventional computers of the type that exist now on our desktops.
Professor Gabriel Aeppli of UCLs Dept of Physics and the Director of the London Centre for Nanotechnology says: "One of the most important questions in natural sciences is whether quantum mechanics is relevant to everyday experience. The famous puzzle of whether Schroedingers cat is dead or alive is the most graphic representation of this question, traditionally considered an academic point of no real practical import.
Jenny Gimpel | EurekAlert!
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The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
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