Purdue University Scientists Taking a Quantum Walk at Room Temperature Vice 20 mili-Kelvins

‘Quantum rainbow’ — photons of switching colors allow room-temperature quantum computing

+  A new quantum random walk technique developed by engineers at Purdue University could eventually allow computers to search through data at speeds beyond that of conventional computers.

“The point is that quantum walks are a central part of the development of quantum computers. And we’re saying there’s another way of doing quantum walks but at room temperature using photons in a way that hasn’t been done before.”

+  The photons used in this technique walk in the color (i.e., frequency) space, randomly changing colors in a quantum manner during the walk. The photons come in highly entangled pairs, such that the walking pattern of one photon is highly dependent on how the other twin photon walks.

Purdue university researchers have developed a quantum computing technique that uses entangled photons, or qudits, instead of qubits. The key advantage of the technique is that it allows quantum computing to be done at room temperature. This image shows how two quantum-entangled photons would move across colors or light frequencies. (Image Credit: Purdue University/Allison Rice)

Purdue university researchers have developed a quantum computing technique that uses entangled photons, or qudits, instead of qubits. The key advantage of the technique is that it allows quantum computing to be done at room temperature. This image shows how two quantum-entangled photons would move across colors or light frequencies. (Image Credit: Purdue University/Allison Rice)

+  By programming the quantum state, the photons can walk in an attractive or repulsive way. Such photons can also store and process multivalued quantum information known as qudits (with a “d”). In 2019, Weiner and postdoctoral researcher Poolad Imany (who is now a postdoctoral associate at the National Institute of Standards and Technology) announced that they had created a two-qudit gate, which would be the equivalent to a transistor in conventional computing.

+  “We like to refer to this as the quantum walk of the rainbow,” Weiner said. “One major advantage is that, unlike other types of quantum computing, this technique can be done at room temperature.”

+  Another advantage is that experiments can be done with integrated photonics and other components common in lightwave or optical communication, which could reduce cost and bring compatibility with fiber optics communications infrastructure.

+  “In the future, quantum walks could be used to search through massive amounts of data in a reasonable time,” he said, “This might include quickly searching through all of the world’s fingerprints or finding a microscopic defect in a newly manufactured airplane wing or defects in microprocessors.”

Source:  Purdue University.  Purdue University,  ‘Quantum rainbow’ — photons of switching colors allow room-temperature quantum computing…

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