Months after researchers from the University of Maryland developed a five-qubit quantum chip, scientists from Harvard University and Sandia National Laboratories discovered a way to link small quantum computers #hardwaremagic
Brilliant scientists came up with a technique to connect quantum computers at an atomic scale, effectively “bridging” them. Instead of focusing on building a big quantum computer, they propose uniting multiple smaller ones.
The problem they faced was linking photons with quantum emitters (atoms that release photons at different frequencies when they go from high to low energy state). To solve it, the team used an “ion beam implanter” that took a given carbon atom out of a diamond matrix and replaced it with a silicon one.
When this happens, the remaining carbon atoms in the area go away, living the silicon one with plenty of space around.
“We can create thousands of implanted locations, which all yield working quantum devices, because we plant the atoms well below the surface of the substrate and anneal them in place. Before this, researchers had to search for emitter atoms among about 1,000 randomly occurring defects — that is, non-carbon atoms — in a diamond substrate of a few microns to find even one that emitted strongly enough to be useful at the single photon level.”
Their work can be read in the journal Science.