51-Qubit Quantum Simulator

November 30, 2017

A graphic representation of the 51 atoms, or qubits, in the new quantum simulator.
[Image credit: Christine Daniloff/MIT]

Programming a computer is generally a fairly arduous process, involving hours of coding, not to mention the laborious work of debugging, testing, and documenting to make sure it works properly.

But for a team of physicists from the Harvard-MIT Center for Ultracold Atoms and the California Institute of Technology, things are actually much tougher.

Working in a Harvard Physics Department lab, a team of researchers led by Harvard Professors Mikhail Lukin and Markus Greiner and Massachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Vladan Vuletic developed a special type of quantum computer, known as a quantum simulator, that is programmed by capturing super-cooled rubidium atoms with lasers and arranging them in a specific order, then allowing quantum mechanics to do the necessary calculations.

Continue reading "Researchers create quantum calculator" by Peter Reuell, November 30, 2017. https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2017/11/researchers-create-new-type-of-quantum-computer/.

Also see the original research article: H. Bernien, S. Schwartz, A. Keesling, H. Levine, A. Omran, H. Pichler, S. Choi, A.S. Zibrov, M. Endres, M. Greiner, V. Vuletić & M.D. Lukin, "Probing many-body dynamics on a 51-atom quantum simulator," Nature 551 (30 November 2017) doi:10.1038/nature24622.