Quantum Dot Technology Advances With Increasingly Stable, Multi-Electron Dots

Artificial Atoms Could Usher In the Quantum Revolution

Key points…

+  Australian scientists have used artificial atoms called quantum dots to make a quantum silicon chip they say is surprisingly stable. The quantum dots make quantum bits, or qubits, and the qubits’s instability has been a bottleneck in designing this kind of chip.

The team says its next step is to examine how these neighboring quantum dots can interact or even bond, and how that will affect their computing.

+  The University of South Wales has made news for previous qubit developments like a suggested periodic table, and the same team is working on the new silicon qubit chips. The quantum dots themselves are made of silicon, and in an artificial atom structure, electrons still swirl and act, but just aren’t surrounding an elemental nucleus.

+  For this circuit, the research team called on its artificial atoms that have higher numbers of electrons, which the researchers found made for “much more robust qubits” in the resulting chip. These artificial atoms are made by stimulating silicon with electricity in a specific way that attracts electrons from the surrounding silicon material. The electrons begin to arrange themselves right away. The center is a “gate electrode,” and the electrons surrounding it are in 2D orbits rather than the 3D orbits found in nature.

+  All of this happens in a space of just 10 nanometers, and the extreme tininess and precision required means that even slightly, microscopically impure silicon materials could throw off the whole process. The group found that as more electrons were attracted to the gate electrodes, a bigger, more densely packed outermost shell protected the innermost layers from instability. Suddenly, the same exact sample of silicon could foster more stable, more robust qubits.

Source:  POPULAR MECHANICS.  Caroline Delbert,  Artificial Atoms Could Usher In the Quantum Revolution…

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