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Magnets and Quantum Computing

The University of Chicago_062022A
[The University of Chicago]


- Overview

Quantum computing could revolutionize our world. For specific and critical tasks, it promises to be much faster than the zero-or-one binary techniques employed by today's machines, from the supercomputers in our labs to the smartphones in our pockets. But developing a quantum computer depends on building a stable network of qubits (or qubits) to store information, access information and perform computations. 

However, the qubit platforms introduced so far have a common problem: they are often fragile and susceptible to outside interference. Even stray photons can cause trouble. Developing fault-tolerant qubits (unaffected by external perturbations) may be the ultimate solution to this challenge.


- Magnons, Magnets and Quantum Computing

From MRI machines to computer hard drive storage, magnetism has played a role in key discoveries that have reshaped our society. In the new field of quantum computing, magnetic interactions could play a role in transferring quantum information. 

In new research (2022) at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, scientists have achieved efficient quantum coupling between two distant magnetic devices that can host a certain type of magnetic excitation, called for the magnon. These excitations occur when an electric current generates a magnetic field. Coupling allows magnons to exchange energy and information. This coupling may help create new quantum information technology devices. 

This instant communication does not require the sending of messages limited by the speed of light between magnons. It's similar to what physicists call quantum entanglement.   


- Superparamagnetic Behavior and Magnetic Quantum Computing Material 

Quantum behavior is a strange and fragile thing, hovering on the edge of reality, somewhere between the world of possibility and the absolute universe. Hidden in the fog of mathematics lies the potential of quantum computing. The device promises to quickly solve algorithms that would take a traditional computer a long time to process. 

Currently, quantum computers are confined to cold chambers near absolute zero (-273 degrees Celsius), where particles are unlikely to escape their critical quantum state. 

Breaking through this temperature barrier and developing materials that still exhibit quantum properties at room temperature has long been a goal of quantum computing. While low temperatures help prevent the particles' properties from disappearing into the fog of possibility of their usefulness, the size and expense of the devices limit their potential and ability to scale up for general use. 

In the latest attempt (September, 2023), a team of researchers at the University of Texas at El Paso has developed a highly magnetic quantum computing material that remains magnetic at room temperature and does not contain any of the high-demand rare earth minerals. 

Superparamagnetism is a form of controlled magnetism in which the magnetic moment of a material is aligned and magnetized by the application of an external magnetic field.


[More to come ...]


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