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IT Voice June 2022 Edition


Quantum problems essential to the future of computing can be solved using a new universal method.

A quantum universe is getting ever closer.

Quantum computers are sophisticated devices that use the principles of quantum mechanics to carry out intricate calculations and operations. They are used in research in several domains, including cybersecurity, medication production, climate change, and artificial intelligence. A recent study in the journal Nature discloses a set of computations that could increase the accuracy of quantum computers.

Since quantum computers must deal with enormous volumes of data and tackle issues that are even too complicated for supercomputers (classical computers), they are more vulnerable to disruptions that cause errors. However, a single mistake made by such systems can result in the loss of a significant amount of important data. To prevent any differences, engineers and scientists build robust error-correction algorithms into quantum computers.

The fact that a quantum computer is thought to be roughly 158 million times quicker than the most potent supercomputer on Earth gives you an idea of its potential. A quantum computer can finish a complex operation in a matter of minutes that would take a traditional computer thousands of years to accomplish. Before quantum computing becomes a commonplace technology, there are a few obstacles we must overcome.

By creating redundant copies of information in the form of bits, a traditional computer prevents errors. Additionally, the copies are utilised to validate the data. However, transferring data from one qubit to another is not allowed under the laws of quantum physics. German researchers have developed a computer process that uses two logical quantum bits and can be applied to any application. A set of universal gates or quantum circuits that can handle all forms of mathematical information serve as a representation of the operation. One of the study’s authors, physicist Lukas Postler, asserts that all algorithms may be programmed into a quantum computer using the universal set.

In this study, the implementation of a fault-tolerant universal gate-set was demonstrated. This gate-set ensures that a single mistake on a physical qubit cannot result in a mistake in the encoded logical quantum information. To approximate any operation a quantum computer is capable of, a universal set of gates is required (this holds true for error-corrected qubits as in our case but also for calculations on bare physical qubits).

The universal set was used in the study to process quantum information on an ion-trap quantum computer, which moves charged atomic particles suspended in free space under the influence of an electromagnetic field. There were 16 atoms altogether in the ion trap computer.

Quantum information was kept in the two logical bits of the set known as the CNOT gate and T gate. Scientists were able to put a universal gate on fault-tolerant bits for the first time, and each bit was spread across seven atoms. A system’s fault tolerance is its capacity to function even when some of its components fail because quantum algorithms without T gates can be easily emulated on conventional computers, eliminating any potential speedup, T gates are very fundamental processes. This makes them particularly fascinating. For algorithms utilising T gates, this is no longer feasible.

Tarun Taunk

Editor In Chief

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