9/8/21 – Ludicrous speed! new wiring positioning a key for
There’s Q*Bert, the long-nosed video game character, and Qbot, the malware. Now there’s qubit (short for quantum bit), the exceptionally fast encoding system used in quantum computers.
Whereas traditional digital computers use only 0 and 1, qubits use 0, 1 or a combination of both, making faster computations and more complex modeling. The reason quantum computing today can’t use more than 100 to 1000 qubits is because large-scale use of millions of qubits is hampered by wires that take up too much space and generate too much heat. The wires used for the magnetic fields that control the spin of electrons in qubits are usually positioned right next to the qubit, requiring ever more wires for more qubits. Also, these magnetic fields drop off with distance, and heat can interfere with performance.
Now, scientists at the University of New South Wales in Australia have devised a way to efficiently position wires that may lead to better development of quantum computers using qubit technology. To get more control of electron spin, less space, and less heat, they placed the wires above the qubits, and also used a dielectric resonator crystal that shrinks the wavelength of the microwaves down to one millimeter. With both these advances, qubits can use less power and less heat, and there’s a shorter distance for the wires.
Pretty soon quantum computing will reach ludicrous speeds using millions of qubits to calculate complex chemistry simulations for more effective drugs, crack encryptions for better cybersecurity, develop artificial intelligence, and create predictive modeling for financial services, traffic patterns, and weather forecasting. Smoke if you got ‘em.