Physics

Neutral Atom Register

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Science  22 Oct 2004:
Vol. 306, Issue 5696, pp. 577
DOI: 10.1126/science.306.5696.577b

Several implementations have been proposed for quantum computation. Each scheme will require the precise setting and manipulation of the quantum units on which the information is to be stored and processed, whether these are atoms, ions, molecules, or flux qubits, etc. However, which scheme will eventually win out is not so clear. Schrader et al.describe the experimental realization of such a quantum register, involving a linear chain of neutral cesium atoms confined to an optical dipole trap. The use of neutral atoms is particularly attractive because the tools for atom storage, trapping, transport, and readout are already available, and also because the excitation levels in the atoms can be tuned individually by introducing a magnetic field gradient along the length of the chain. As hoped, each individual atom in the chain could be addressed and coherently manipulated. Although the size of the present register is quite modest—only five atoms long—it should be readily scalable to a chain of several hundred trapped atoms. — ISO

Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 150501 (2004).

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