Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

CWRU physicists deploy magnetic vortex to control electron spin

16.06.2016

Potential technology for quantum computing, keener sensors

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University have developed a way to swiftly and precisely control electron spins at room temperature.


Researchers coupled a diamond nanoparticle with a magnetic vortex to control electron spin in nitrogen-vacancy defects.

Credit: Case Western Reserve University

The technology, described in Nature Communications, offers a possible alternative strategy for building quantum computers that are far faster and more powerful than today's supercomputers.

"What makes electronic devices possible is controlling the movement of electrons from place to place using electric fields that are strong, fast and local," said physics Professor Jesse Berezovsky, leader of the research. "That's hard with magnetic fields, but they're what you need to control spin."

Other researchers have searched for materials where electric fields can mimic the effects of a magnetic field, but finding materials where this effect is strong enough and still works at room temperature has proven difficult.

"Our solution," Berezovsky said, "is to use a magnetic vortex."

Berezovsky worked with physics PhD students Michael S. Wolf and Robert Badea.

The researchers fabricated magnetic micro-disks that have no north and south poles like those on a bar magnet, but magnetize into a vortex. A magnetic field emanates from the vortex core. At the center point, the field is particularly strong and rises perpendicular to the disk.

The vortices are coupled with diamond nanoparticles. In the diamond lattice inside each nanoparticle, several individual spins are trapped inside of defects called nitrogen vacancies.

The scientists use a pulse from a laser to initialize the spin. By applying microwaves and a weak magnetic field, Berezovsky's team can move the vortex in nanoseconds, shifting the central point, which can cause an electron to change its spin.

In what's called a quantum coherent state, the spin can act as a quantum bit, or qubit--the basic unit of information in a quantum computer,

In current computers, bits of information exist in one of two states: zero or one. But in a superposition state, the spin can be up and down at the same time, that is, zero and one simultaneously. That capability would allow for more complex and faster computing.

"The spins are close to each other; you want spins to interact with their neighbors in quantum computing," Berezovsky said. "The power comes from entanglement."

The magnetic field gradient produced by a vortex proved sufficient to manipulate spins just nanometers apart.

In addition to computing, electrons controlled in coherent quantum states might be useful for extremely high-resolution sensors, the researchers say. For example, in an MRI, they could be used to sense magnetic fields in far more detail than with today's technology, perhaps distinguishing atoms.

Controlling the electron spins without destroying the coherent quantum states has proven difficult with other techniques, but a series of experiments by the group has shown the quantum states remain solid. In fact, "the vortex appears to enhance the microwave field we apply," Berezovsky said.

The scientists are continuing to shorten the time it takes to change the spin, which is a key to high-speed computing. They are also investigating the interactions between the vortex, microwave magnetic field and electron spin, and how they evolve together.

Media Contact

Kevin Mayhood
kevin.mayhood@case.edu
216-534-7183

 @cwru

http://www.case.edu 

Kevin Mayhood | EurekAlert!

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Electrocatalysis can advance green transition
23.01.2017 | Technical University of Denmark

nachricht Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin
23.01.2017 | Ferdinand-Braun-Institut Leibniz-Institut für Höchstfrequenztechnik

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Tracking movement of immune cells identifies key first steps in inflammatory arthritis

23.01.2017 | Health and Medicine

Electrocatalysis can advance green transition

23.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New technology for mass-production of complex molded composite components

23.01.2017 | Process Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>