A recent discovery could unleash quantum applications that have thus far been unattainable.
A team of researchers from Griffith University and the University of Queensland in Australia have made a massive breakthrough, overcoming one of the biggest challenges facing the development of powerful quantum computers. According to a report from CS Monitor, scientists have constructed a new chip that incorporates a Fredkin gate to simplify a key logic process.
The breakthrough may pave the way for more feasible and simplified quantum computers, which has huge implications for unlocking the potential of quantum logic.
According to Dr. Raj Patel, one of the study’s principal researchers, “Similar to building a huge wall out of lots of small bricks, large quantum circuits require very many logic gates to function. However, if larger bricks are used the same wall could be built with far fewer bricks.”
Quantum computing is a whole different ballgame from traditional computing – it’s even more complex than the processes behind today’s most powerful supercomputers. Traditional computers use binary code, written in 1’s and 0’s to create bits that allow for a wide range of different functions. In a quantum computer, bits are no larger than a single atom and could represent a 0, 1 or a ‘superposition’ of both values at the same time.
In other words, a quantum computer requires a significantly higher number of “bricks” to function. That is, until researchers began working with the Fredkin gate.
A Fredkin gate is a single component of a quantum computer circuit, where two quantum bits can be exchanged or swapped depending on a third independent value. Fredkin gates are made of five separate logic operations, so putting them to use in the context of a whole computer posed a serious issue for researchers.
By using particles of light, the research team was able to drastically simplify the process of constructing a Fredkin gate. “The research team used the quantum entanglement of photons – particles of light – to implement the controlled-SWAP operation directly,” the study wrote.
The promise of super-powerful computers has researchers rushing to crack the code of quantum logic. The breakthrough brings us one step closer to harnessing the power of quantum computers, which could change the world as we know it.
A press release from Griffith University describing the details of the study can be found here.