Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New simulator is next step on the road to developing quantum computers

27.11.2006
Scientists have proven theoretically a novel way to build a simulator that can recreate the way atoms and particles behave in a quantum system, says research published today.

The proposed simulator is unique because it could let researchers control how individual particles move and interact with each other. This ability to control individual parts of a quantum system is key to the development of powerful quantum computers in the future.

The term ‘quantum system’ is used to describe a system which is governed by the laws of quantum mechanics, as opposed to being governed by the classical laws of physics such as mechanics, gravity and Einstein’s general theory of relativity. Quantum mechanics comes into play when systems are the size of atoms or smaller, because on this very small scale the conventional laws of mechanics no longer apply. Quantum computing devices of the future, which have not yet been successfully created, will rely on scientists harnessing quantum behaviour to create systems that can far exceed the speed and processing capabilities of current silicon-based computers.

The study, published in Nature Physics, shows that a device can be built which is able to simulate the behaviour of atoms and other particles according to the laws of quantum physics. The proposed simulator would consist of atoms and photons – particles of light – in an array of very small silicon cavities, measuring just 50 micrometres across. The researchers show that the atoms and photons inside the cavities would form a strongly-interacting many-body system, with photons jumping from cavity to cavity, and at the same time being scattered off each other – all examples of quantum behaviour.

Dr Michael J Hartmann, who led the study along with his colleagues Mr. Fernando Brandão and Professor Martin Plenio from Imperial College London’s Department of Physics and Institute for Mathematical Sciences, said: “Our research has successfully shown that it is possible to create a simulation of a system governed by the laws of quantum physics, in which scientists could have control of individual particles. This is a key theoretical discovery because in order to build the quantum computers of the future - which harness the power of atoms to perform calculations billions of times faster than normal computers – we will need to be able to manipulate quantum systems in this way.”

Professor Plenio adds: “In the short term the simulator could be used to test the capabilities of materials at the atomic and sub-atomic level when quantum physics governs atoms’ behaviour. In the very long run we anticipate that these kinds of simulators could potentially be used to create new materials with capabilities and characteristics which do not occur naturally.”

Laura Gallagher | alfa
Further information:
http://www.imperial.ac.uk

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Climate cycles may explain how running water carved Mars' surface features
02.12.2016 | Penn State

nachricht What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?
02.12.2016 | University of Toronto

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: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>