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A new super-cooled microwave source boosts the scale-up of quantum computers

Creative impression of an on-chip microwave supply controlling qubits. Credit: Aleksandr Kakinen

Researchers in Finland have developed a circuit that produces the high-quality microwave indicators required to manage quantum computer systems whereas working at temperatures close to absolute zero. It is a key step in direction of transferring the management system nearer to the quantum processor, which can make it attainable to enormously improve the variety of qubits within the processor.

One of many components limiting the scale of quantum computer systems is the mechanism used to manage the qubits in quantum processors. That is usually achieved utilizing a collection of microwave pulses, and since quantum processors function at temperatures close to absolute zero, the management pulses are usually introduced into the cooled surroundings through broadband cables from room temperature.

Because the variety of qubits grows, so does the variety of cables wanted. This limits the potential dimension of a quantum processor, as a result of the fridges cooling the qubits must change into bigger to accommodate increasingly cables whereas additionally working more durable to chill them down—in the end a shedding proposition.

A analysis consortium led by Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland has now developed a key element of the answer to this conundrum. “Now we have constructed a exact microwave supply that works on the identical extraordinarily low temperature because the quantum processors, roughly -273 levels,” says Mikko Möttönen, professor at Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, who led the workforce.

The brand new microwave supply is an on-chip gadget that may be built-in with a quantum processor. Lower than a millimeter in dimension, it probably removes the necessity for high-frequency management cables connecting completely different temperatures. With this low-power, low-temperature microwave supply, it could be attainable to make use of smaller cryostats whereas nonetheless rising the variety of qubits in a processor.

“Our device produces one hundred times more power than previous versions, which is enough to control qubits and carry out quantum logic operations,” says Möttönen. “It produces a very precise sine wave, oscillating over a billion times per second. As a result, errors in qubits from the microwave source are very infrequent, which is important when implementing precise quantum logic operations.”

Nevertheless, a continuous-wave microwave supply, such because the one produced by this gadget, can’t be used as is to manage qubits. First, the microwaves have to be formed into pulses. The workforce is presently creating strategies to shortly swap the microwave supply on and off.

Even with no switching resolution to create pulses, an environment friendly, low-noise, low-temperature microwave supply could possibly be helpful in a variety of quantum applied sciences, equivalent to quantum sensors.

“In addition to quantum computers and sensors, the microwave source can act as a clock for other electronic devices. It can keep different devices in the same rhythm, allowing them to induce operations for several different qubits at the desired instant of time,” explains Möttönen.

The theoretical analysis and the preliminary design had been carried out by Juha Hassel and others at VTT. Hassel, who began this work at VTT, is presently the top of engineering and growth at IQM, a Finnish quantum-computing {hardware} firm. The gadget was then constructed at VTT and operated by postdoctoral analysis Chengyu Yan and his colleagues at Aalto University utilizing the OtaNano analysis infrastructure. Yan is presently an affiliate professor at Huazhong University of Science and Know-how, China. The groups concerned on this analysis are a part of the Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence in Quantum Know-how (QTF) and the Finnish Quantum Institute (InstituteQ).

IBM announces development of 127-qubit quantum processor

Extra data:
Chengyu Yan, A low-noise on-chip coherent microwave supply, Nature Electronics (2021). DOI: 10.1038/s41928-021-00680-z.

Supplied by
Aalto University

A brand new super-cooled microwave supply boosts the scale-up of quantum computer systems (2021, December 9)
retrieved 9 December 2021

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