The solid-state quantum research crew from the University of Science and Technology of China succeeded in performing the quantum logic gate operation on one single electron at 10 picoseconds, renewing the previous world records by nearly 100 times, making a big step toward the semiconductor-based “quantum computer”.
It is inferable from the Moore's Law that around 2020, each transistor might be as small as an electron, also known as single-electron transistor. According to Guo Guoping, director of the research project, the information representation with “0” and “1” in the computer information processing is achieved by switch closure. Once the tunneling occurs as the transistor becomes increasingly smaller, the electron will go directly through the transistor and be uncontrollable by the switch closure.
The world’s major computer chip manufacturers are still trying to avoid tunneling. But in the opinion of Guo, it is wiser to utilize than avoid in the long term, advancing the use of “quantum computing” to represent the information “0” and “1” with the horizontal and vertical properties of one single electron.
“Any complicated computer operation is achieved by arithmetic operations of single and two bits, just like the building of houses in round and square bricks.
“The research achievement is a breakthrough in the single-bit operational speed, representing the elements of ‘0’ and ‘1’ with one single electron at 10 picoseconds,” said Guo.
Previously, the U.S. and Japanese research institutes achieved the electrically controlled semiconductor logic gate at 1,000 picoseconds. The achievement by Guo and his colleagues increases the operational speed by almost 100 times to 10 picoseconds, making a significant step in promoting the quantum computing from laboratory demonstration to practical use. The Nature Communications, a branch of the academic journal Nature, has published the achievement in its entirety recently.
Guo said that China has launched the solid-state quantum chip project in efforts to gain a foothold in the global competition in the next-generation computer chips. Once the quantum chip is introduced to the computer, it will make the quantum computer characterized by exponentially increased operational speed and greatly improved data processing capabilities.
Read the Chinese version: 固态量子芯片研究我国刷新世界纪录; Source: People's Daily
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