Physics

A circular solution for quantum simulation

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Science  23 Mar 2018:
Vol. 359, Issue 6382, pp. 1374
DOI: 10.1126/science.359.6382.1374-c

Quantum simulation can map challenging problems in complex materials onto better defined ones in simpler, easier-to-manipulate systems. Physical implementations range from trapped ions to superconducting qubits, each having distinct strengths and weaknesses. Nguyen et al. propose a quantum simulator that seems to combine many of the best features of the existing simulators in one system, while being within current experimental reach. The simulator is based on circular Rydberg atoms—with a highly excited electron orbiting the nucleus along a roughly circular path—where the atoms can be trapped by laser light, can be read out one by one, and have very long lifetimes. The interactions between such atoms would make it possible to simulate some of the most challenging problems in many-body physics.

Phys. Rev. X 8, 011032 (2018).

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