A Revolutionary Technique to Retailer Info as Sound Waves

In a breakthrough in quantum info storage, researchers have developed a technique to translate electrical quantum states into sound and vice versa, using phonons.

Quantum computing, similar to conventional computing, requires a technique to retailer the knowledge it makes use of and processes. Within the pc you’re utilizing proper now, info—whether or not or not it’s pictures of your canine, a reminder a couple of buddy’s birthday, or the phrases you’re typing into your browser’s tackle bar—have to be saved someplace. Quantum computing, a comparatively new subject, remains to be exploring the place and how you can retailer quantum info.

Modern Technique for Quantum Info Storage

In a paper revealed not too long ago within the journal Nature Physics, Mohammad Mirhosseini, assistant professor {of electrical} engineering and utilized physics on the California Institute of Know-how (Caltech), reveals a brand new technique his lab developed for effectively translating electrical quantum states into sound and vice versa. Any such translation might enable for storing quantum info ready by future quantum computer systems, that are more likely to be comprised of electrical circuits.

Storing Quantum Information as Sound Waves

Mohammad Mirhosseini and his staff have launched an progressive technique to retailer quantum info by translating electrical quantum states into sound. The brand new method makes use of phonons and avoids the vitality loss related to earlier strategies. It permits longer storage durations and represents a big development within the subject of quantum computing. Credit score: Maayan Illustration

This technique makes use of what are often known as phonons, the sound equal of a lightweight particle known as a photon. (Keep in mind that in quantum mechanics, all waves are particles and vice versa). The experiment investigates phonons for storing quantum info as a result of it’s comparatively simple to construct small units that may retailer these mechanical waves.

Utilizing Sound Waves to Retailer Info

To know how a sound wave can retailer info, think about an especially echoey room. Now, let’s say that you must keep in mind your grocery checklist for the afternoon, so that you open the door to that room and shout, “Eggs, bacon, and milk!” and shut the door. An hour later, when it’s time to go to the grocery retailer, you open the door, poke your head inside, and listen to your individual voice nonetheless echoing, “Eggs, bacon, and milk!” You simply used sound waves to retailer info.

Mohammad Mirhosseini

Mohammad Mirhosseini. Credit score: Caltech

After all, in the actual world, an echo like that wouldn’t final very lengthy, and your voice may find yourself so distorted you may now not make out your individual phrases, to not point out that utilizing a complete room for storing a little bit bit of knowledge could be ridiculous. The analysis staff’s answer is a tiny machine consisting of versatile plates which might be vibrated by sound waves at extraordinarily excessive frequencies. When an electrical cost is positioned on these plates, they turn out to be in a position to work together with electrical indicators carrying quantum info. This permits that info to be piped into the machine for storage, and be piped out for later use—not in contrast to the door to the room you have been shouting into earlier on this story.

Earlier Analysis and New Developments

In keeping with Mohammad Mirhosseini, earlier research had investigated a particular sort of supplies often known as piezoelectrics as a way of changing mechanical vitality to electrical vitality in quantum functions.

“These supplies, nevertheless, are inclined to trigger vitality loss for electrical and sound waves, and loss is a giant killer within the quantum world,” Mirhosseini says. In distinction, the brand new technique developed by Mirhosseini and his staff is unbiased on the properties of particular supplies, making it appropriate with established quantum units, that are primarily based on microwaves.

Conclusion: Developments and Challenges

Creating efficient storage units with small footprints has been one other sensible problem for researchers engaged on quantum functions, says Alkim Bozkurt, a graduate scholar in Mirhosseini’s group and the lead writer of the paper.

“Nevertheless, our technique permits the storage of quantum info from electrical circuits for durations two orders of magnitude longer than different compact mechanical units,” he provides.

Reference: “A quantum electromechanical interface for long-lived phonons” by Alkim Bozkurt, Han Zhao, Chaitali Joshi, Henry G. LeDuc, Peter Okay. Day and Mohammad Mirhosseini, 22 June 2023, Nature Physics.
DOI: 10.1038/s41567-023-02080-w

Co-authors embody Chaitali Joshi and Han Zhao, each postdoctoral students in electrical engineering and utilized physics; and Peter Day and Henry LeDuc, who’re scientists on the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which Caltech manages for NASA. The analysis was funded partly by the KNI-Wheatley Students program.

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