Spinning qubits are new hope for quantum physics

The spin qubits used to control nuclear spin in a two-dimensional material have allowed it to cross other frontiers in quantum science and technology. This will enable applications such as atomic-scale NMR spectroscopy and better reading and writing of quantum information.

A team of physicists from Purdue University Another breakthrough. Use spin qubits as atomic scale sensors, and also to obtain the first experimental control of nuclear spin qubits in hexagonal boron nitride. The test results are described in nature materials.

This is the first work showing optical initiation and coherent control of nuclear spin in 2D materials. Now we can use light to initiate nuclear spin, and with this control we can write and read quantum information using nuclear spins in 2D materials. This method can have many different applications in quantum memory, quantum detection and quantum simulation.a. Tongkang Li of the Purdue Institute of Quantum Science and Engineering

Spin Qubit – What is it?

The performance of quantum technology is related to qubits, which are the quantum version of classical computer bits. Often, instead of a silicon transistor, they have an atom, a subatomic particle or a photon. In the electron or nuclear spin qubit, the well-known “0” or “1” binary state of a classical computer qubit is represented by spin — a property very similar to magnetic polarization — meaning that spin is sensitive to the electromagnetic field. In order to perform any task, the rotation and its stability must first be controlled.

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Spin qubits can be used as a sensor, for example, to study the structure of a protein or the temperature of a target with nanoscale precision. Electrons trapped in defects in 3D diamond crystals allowed imaging and detection resolutions in the 10-100 nm range.

But qubits embedded in single-layer or two-dimensional materials can provide higher measurement accuracy and a stronger signal. The first electron spin qubits in hexagonal boron nitride were built in 2019 by removing boron from the lattice of atoms and locking an electron in place. Now professor. Lee made a connection between photons and nuclear spin in extremely thin hexagonal boron nitride.

A 2D nuclear spin grating would be suitable for large scale quantum simulation. They can operate at higher temperatures than superconducting qubits.a. Tongkang Li

How did that happen? First, the physicists removed the boron atom from the lattice and replaced it with an electron surrounded by three nitrogen atoms. At this point, each nitrogen nucleus is in a random spin state, which can be -1, 0 or +1. Then the electron was set to spin 0 using laser light, which has little effect on the spin of the nitrogen nucleus.

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The interaction between the excited electron and the three surrounding nitrogen nuclei forces the nucleus to change. When the cycle is repeated several times, the nucleus becomes spin +1, as it remains independent of the repeated interactions. When the three cores are set to +1, they can be used as three qubits.

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