Maastricht Economic and social Research and  training centre on Innovation and Technology

I&T Weekly holiday break
I&T Weekly is taking a holiday break. We will be back on Friday, January 12, 2018 with a fresh selection of innovation and technology news. On behalf of the entire UNU-MERIT team, we wish our readers an excellent 2018!

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All headlines
  • France announces landmark ban on fossil fuel production
  • Extreme laser bursts may lead to practical nuclear fusion
  • Gene editing staves off deafness in mice
  • Integrated circuits could make quantum computers scalable
  • 'Water cloak' uses electromagnetic waves to eliminate turbulence
  • Cold cigarette lighter will power satellite
  • Integrated circuits could make quantum computers scalable
    Researchers at TU Delft and University of New South Wales have designed a scalable quantum computing architecture based on widely used complementary CMOS manufacturing techniques. The approach encodes information in the spins of individual electrons confined in quantum dots, and could allow the development of large-scale computers incorporating millions of qubits.

    For now, the state of the art in quantum computing is represented by devices with a few dozen qubits. But although quantum computers at this scale do have their uses, individual devices will need to harness hundreds, thousands, or even millions of qubits before they really come into their own.

    The researchers describe how cutting-edge CMOS processes are approaching the point at which silicon microelectronic components can be made small enough to be integrated with quantum-dot spin qubits. The architecture designed by the team is based on a silicon qubit layer enriched with silicon-28. Above this, and separated by a silica interconnect layer, the classical control and readout circuits would be patterned in isotopically normal silicon. Working at a temperature below 1 K, qubit operations would be controlled by electron spin resonance, coupling by exchange interactions between the confined electrons, and measurement by radiofrequency dispersive readout.

    Using minimum feature sizes that are achievable now or anticipated in the near term, the researchers propose a circuit geometry that would result in individual 2D modules of 480 qubits each. Thousands of these modules could be combined, producing a computer containing millions of interacting qubits.

    Physics World / Nature Communications    December 20, 2017