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Two-Quantum Bit Logic Gate Build in Silicon

Category: Science & Technology
Posted: 05:53AM

For decades silicon has been used to construct the various electronic devices we rely on, and while silicon is approaching its end for these devices, using silicon is actually a goal for quantum computers. This is because we already have a robust infrastructure for manufacturing silicon devices, so realizing quantum computing components with the material will make them easy to produce. Researchers at the University of New South Wales have recently created the final piece in the silicon quantum computing puzzle by building a two-qubit logic gate.

Like in a traditional computer, the logic gate is what performs the logical operations on inputs, but instead of working on electronic bits, it will instead work on quantum bits, or qubits. While electronic bits can exist as either a 0 or 1, qubits can exist as both 0 and 1 at the same time, thanks to a phenomenon called superposition. Exploiting superposition like this is what will allow a quantum computer to perform highly parallel tasks no modern computer can. As this is a two-qubit logic gate, it can operate on four values at a time, while a three-qubit gate would operate on eight. To create this new device, the researchers modified the design of electronic transistors so that each one would only be associated with one electron, and then the data is encoded onto the electrons as spin.

All the other components necessary to construct a quantum computer have been made of silicon previously, so this discovery provides the final piece to the puzzle. The next step for this research is to find industry partners for manufacturing full-scale quantum processor chips.

Source: University of New South Wales

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