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Subatomic quantum memory in diamond demonstrated

June 28, 2011

Physicists at the University of California, Santa Barbara and the University of Konstanz in Germany have developed a breakthrough in the use of diamond in quantum physics, marking an important step toward quantum computing.

The physicists were able to coax the quantum information contained within a single electron in diamond to move into an adjacent single nitrogen nucleus and then back again, using on-chip wiring.

The researchers said the discovery shows the high-fidelity operation of a quantum mechanical gate at the atomic level, enabling the transfer of full quantum information to and from one electron spin and a single nuclear spin at room temperature. The process is scalable, and opens the door to new solid-state quantum device development.

Ref.: D. D. Awschalom, et al., A quantum memory intrinsic to single nitrogen–vacancy centres in diamond, Nature Physics, 2011; [DOI: 10.1038/nphys2026]

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