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For Quantum Computer, Add a Dash of Disorder.

Science News (03/11/10) Grossman, Lisa

The augmentation of the coupling between light and matter in quantum systems by disorder could eventually lead to fast quantum computers that are easy to construct, according to a study from researchers at the Technical University of Denmark. They have demonstrated that randomly arranged materials can capture light just as well as ordered ones. The researchers built a waveguide featuring holes that were randomly drilled into a gallium arsenide crystal, and also incorporated quantum dots as a substitute for atoms that could become entangled with photons. The quantum dots were induced to emit photons by hitting them with a laser, and the researchers discovered that 94 percent of the photons stayed close to their emitters, creating spots of trapped light in the crystal. The quantum dots also emitted photons 15 times faster after a light spot formed around them. If these light corrals can be entangled with each other, the system could one day support a quantum network in a randomly organized crystal.

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