Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New material for quantum computing discovered out of the blue

Date:
October 27, 2013
Source:
University College London
Summary:
A common blue pigment used in the 5 note could have an important role to play in the development of a quantum computer, according to a new article.

A common blue pigment used in the 5 note could have an important role to play in the development of a quantum computer.
Credit: philip kinsey / Fotolia

A common blue pigment used in the 5 note could have an important role to play in the development of a quantum computer, according to a paper published today in the journal Nature.

The pigment, copper phthalocyanine (CuPc), which is similar to the light harvesting section of the chlorophyll molecule, is a low-cost organic semiconductor that is found in many household products. Crucially, it can be processed into a thin film that can be readily used for device fabrication, a significant advantage over similar materials that have been studied previously.

Now, researchers from the London Centre for Nanotechnology at UCL and the University of British Columbia have shown that the electrons in CuPc can remain in 'superposition' -- an intrinsically quantum effect where the electron exists in two states at once -- for surprisingly long times, showing this simple dye molecule has potential as a medium for quantum technologies.

The development of quantum computing requires precise control of tiny individual "qubits," the quantum analogs of the classical binary bits, '0' and '1', which underpin all of our computation and communications technologies today. What distinguishes the "qubits" from classical bits is their ability to exist in superposition states.

The decay time of such superpositions tells us how useful a candidate qubit could be in quantum technologies. If this time is long, quantum data storage, manipulation and transmission become possible.

Lead author Marc Warner from the London Centre for Nanotechnology, said: "In theory, a quantum computer can easily solve problems that a normal, classical, computer would not be able to answer in the lifetime of the universe. We just don't know how to build one yet.

"Our research shows that a common blue dye has more potential for quantum computing than many of the more exotic molecules that have been considered previously."

CuPc possesses many other attributes that could exploit the spin of electrons, rather than their charge, to store and process information which are highly desirable in a more conventional quantum technology. For example, the pigment strongly absorbs visible light and is easy to modify chemically and physically, so its magnetic and electrical properties can be controlled.

Dr Warner added: "The properties of copper phthalocyanine make it of interest for the emerging field of quantum engineering, which seeks to exploit the quantum properties of matter to perform tasks like information processing or sensing more effectively than has ever been possible."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University College London. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Marc Warner, Salahud Din, Igor S. Tupitsyn, Gavin W. Morley, A. Marshall Stoneham, Jules A. Gardener, Zhenlin Wu, Andrew J. Fisher, Sandrine Heutz, Christopher W. M. Kay, Gabriel Aeppli. Potential for spin-based information processing in a thin-film molecular semiconductor. Nature, 2013; DOI: 10.1038/nature12597

Cite This Page:

University College London. "New material for quantum computing discovered out of the blue." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027185206.htm>.
University College London. (2013, October 27). New material for quantum computing discovered out of the blue. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027185206.htm
University College London. "New material for quantum computing discovered out of the blue." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131027185206.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Company Copies Keys From Photos

Company Copies Keys From Photos

Newsy (Sep. 22, 2014) A new company allows customers to make copies of keys by simply uploading a couple of photos. But could it also be great for thieves? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

AFP (Sep. 22, 2014) The best funny internet cat videos are honoured at LA's Feline Film Festival. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: SpaceX Rocket Carries 3-D Printer to Space

Raw: SpaceX Rocket Carries 3-D Printer to Space

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) A SpaceX Rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, carrying a custom-built 3-D printer into space. NASA envisions astronauts one day using the printer to make their own spare parts. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
What This MIT Sensor Could Mean For The Future Of Robotics

What This MIT Sensor Could Mean For The Future Of Robotics

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) MIT researchers developed a light-based sensor that gives robots 100 times the sensitivity of a human finger, allowing for "unprecedented dexterity." 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

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