Info
Info
News Article

First Programmable Photonic Silicon Quantum Chip

News

An international team of researchers led by the University of Bristol have demonstrated that light can be used to implement a programmable, multi-functional quantum processor.

The team has developed a silicon chip that can be used as a scientific tool to perform a wide array of quantum information experiments, while at the same time showing the way to how fully functional quantum computers might be developed from mainstream chip-making processes.

Quantum computers are instead based on "qubits" that can be in a superposition of the 0 and 1 states. Multiple qubits can also be linked in a special way called quantum entanglement. These two quantum physical properties provide the power to quantum computers.

One challenge is to make quantum computer processors that can be re-programmed to perform different tasks in a similar way to today's computers

The chip developed by the Bristol team can fully control two qubits of information within a single integrated chip. This means any task that can be achieved with two qubits, can be programmed and realised with the device.

"What we've demonstrated is a programmable machine that can do lots of different tasks," said Dr Xiaogang Qiang, who now works in the National University of Defence Technology in China. "It's a very primitive processor, because it only works on two qubits, which means there is still a long way before we can do useful computations with this technology. But what is exciting is that it the different properties of silicon photonics that can be used for making a quantum computer have been combined together in one device. This is just too complicated to physically implement with light using previous approaches."

"We need to be looking at how to make quantum computers out of technology that is scalable, which includes technology that we know can be built incredibly precisely on a tremendous scale," said Dr Jonathan Matthews, a member of the research team based at the Quantum Engineering Technology (QET) Labs at the University of Bristol. "We think silicon is a promising material to do this, partly because of all the investment that has already gone into developing silicon for the micro-electronics and photonics industries. And the types of devices developed in Bristol are showing just how well quantum devices can be engineered.

"A consequence of the growing sophistication and functionality of these devices is that they are becoming a research tool in their own right "” we've used this device to implement several different quantum information experiments using nearly 100,000 different re-programmed settings," he said.




PIC International 2020 dates announced!

We are delighted to announce that PIC International 2020 will take place on Tuesday 31st March and Wednesday 1st April at the Sheraton Airport Hotel, Brussels.

The event continues to grow exponentially year on year with many sponsors and exhibitors already signed up for 2020.

Don't miss out on being a part of the leading global integrated photonic circuits industry event

Contact us today for speaking/sponsorship/exhibition opportunities

Email [email protected] or Telephone +44(0)24 7671 8970

Info
×
Search the news archive

To close this popup you can press escape or click the close icon.
Logo
×
Logo
×
Register - Step 1

You may choose to subscribe to the PIC Magazine, the PIC Newsletter, or both. You may also request additional information if required, before submitting your application.


Please subscribe me to:

 

You chose the industry type of "Other"

Please enter the industry that you work in:
Please enter the industry that you work in:
 
X
Info
X
Info