Atom Devices: Ion traps and Degenerate Neutral Gases
Qubits can be realized in atoms through different means. For instance, atoms have internal energy levels that can be utilized as qubits. These levels (whether in neutral or charged atoms) are relatively stable against environmental influences, leading to long coherence times. The state of the atomic qubit is readily manipulated with lasers. Additionally, lasers are used to modify and engineer Hamiltonians, making quantum simulation with this platform possible.
The main difference between the ion system and the neutral atom approach is the number of atoms involved. Neutral atom experiments use either Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) or degenerate Fermi gases as their starting point for studying quantum phenomena. Typically these clouds contain 104-106 atoms. While single atoms can be isolated, JQI experiments currently focus on manipulating the larger clouds in an optical lattice. In contrast, JQI ion trapping experiments are more of a bottom-up approach, manipulating single ions, up to about 20 ions. The two platforms are complementary, each offering a different perspective to quantum information.
JQI researchers in both neutral atoms and ions work on many aspects of quantum information beyond performing high fidelity gates (operations). Examples of current research directions are building scalable devices, teleportation, and quantum simulation of many body systems.
JQI Experimental Research Groups
Trapped Ion Quantum Information Group:
Ultracold neutral atoms:
JQI Theoretical Research Groups
Ultracold atoms in optical lattices:
Interactions and collisions between ultracold atoms/molecules:
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