Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Quantum oscillator responds to pressure

Date:
October 12, 2012
Source:
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Summary:
In the future, superconducting quantum bits might serve as components of high-performance computers. Today, superconducting quantum bits are already helping scientists better understand the structure of solids, researchers report.

Frequency spectra are plotted versus mechanical deformation in the diagram. Every atomic quantum system leaves a characteristic white line.
Credit: KIT / CFN

In the future, superconducting quantum bits might serve as components of high-performance computers. Today, superconducting quantum bits are already helping scientists better understand the structure of solids, as reported by researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in the journal Science.

By means of Josephson junctions, they measured the oscillations of individual atoms "tunneling" between two positions. This means that the atoms oscillated quantum mechanically. Deformation of the specimen even changed the frequency.

"We are now able to directly control the frequencies of individual tunneling atoms in the solid," say Alexey Ustinov and Georg Weiß, Professors at the Physikalisches Institut of KIT and members of the Center for Functional Nanostructures CFN. Metaphorically speaking, the researchers so far have been confronted with a closed box. From inside, different clattering noises could be heard. Now, it is not only possible to measure the individual objects contained, but also to change their physical properties in a controlled manner.

The specimen used for this purpose consists of a superconducting ring interrupted by a nanometer-thick non-conductor, a so-called Josephson junction. The qubit formed in this way can be switched very precisely between two quantum states. "Interestingly, such a Josephson qubit couples to the other atomic quantum systems in the non-conductor," explains Ustinov. "And we measure their tunneling frequencies via this coupling."

At temperatures slightly above absolute zero, most sources of noise in the material are switched off. The only remaining noise is produced by atoms of the material when they jump between two equivalent positions. "These frequency spectra of atom jumps can be measured very precisely with the Josephson junction," says Ustinov. "Metaphorically speaking, we have a microscope for the quantum mechanics of individual atoms."

In the experiment performed, 41 jumping atoms were counted and their frequency spectra were measured while the specimen was bent slightly with a piezo element. Georg Weiß explains: "The atomic distances are changed slightly only, while the frequencies of the tunneling atoms change strongly." So far, only the sum of all tunneling atoms could be measured. The technology to separately switch atomic tunneling systems only emerged a few years ago. The new method developed at KIT to control atomic quantum systems might provide valuable insights into how qubits can be made fit for application. However, the method is also suited for studying materials of conventional electronic components, such as transistors, and establishing the basis of further miniaturization.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. G. J. Grabovskij, T. Peichl, J. Lisenfeld, G. Weiss, A. V. Ustinov. Strain Tuning of Individual Atomic Tunneling Systems Detected by a Superconducting Qubit. Science, 2012; 338 (6104): 232 DOI: 10.1126/science.1226487

Cite This Page:

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. "Quantum oscillator responds to pressure." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121012083436.htm>.
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. (2012, October 12). Quantum oscillator responds to pressure. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121012083436.htm
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. "Quantum oscillator responds to pressure." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121012083436.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways

AP (July 30, 2014) — British officials said on Wednesday that driverless cars will be tested on roads in as many as three cities in a trial program set to begin in January. Officials said the tests will last up to three years. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

Amid Drought, UCLA Sees Only Water

AP (July 30, 2014) — A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow

AP (July 30, 2014) — Smartphone powered paper airplane that was popular on crowdfunding website KickStarter makes its debut at Wisconsin airshow (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

U.K. To Allow Driverless Cars On Public Roads

Newsy (July 30, 2014) — Driverless cars could soon become a staple on U.K. city streets, as they're set to be introduced to a few cities in 2015. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:  

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile iPhone Android Web
      Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins