01/03/2012

Researchers at IBM have reported the development supeprovodnikovogo qubit consisting of silicon. First developed a quantum computer, which is able to sufficiently long coherence time for calculations. Sounds promising - letâ€™s see, what does this mean in practice.

In conventional computers, information expressed in bits, which can take the value 0 or 1. In contrast, quantum computers use quantum bits or "qubits". Their difference is that the bits can be 0 or 1, and qubits can be 0, 1, or something in-between 0 and 1 (a so-called superposition). At first glance, the difference is small, but in fact it is huge: only 100 qubits can store more classic "bit" of information than the number of atoms in the universe.

From the above it is clear that the emergence of new computers that work with qubits, in terms of the impact on our lives can only be compared with the invention of the microprocessor.

The main problem of quantum computers is the fact that qubits under the influence of the environment (neighboring parts of a computer) are beginning to act like ordinary bits - the so-called decoherence.

"In 1999, the coherence held 1 nanosecond," - said Matthias Steffen from IBM. "Last year, the coherence time increased to 1.4 microseconds. Through technology developed by us, we have a coherence time of 10 to 100 microseconds. We need to improve these rates by 10-100 times before reaching the goal. But given that over the years we have achieved an increase coherence time is 10 000 times, it does not scare me. "

Original: Zmescience