Quantum computing with entangled atoms and photons

Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - 3:15pm - 4:15pm
Reiss 502
Boris Blinov
Department of Physics, University of Washington

Trapped atomic ions are excellent carriers of quantum information, with demonstrated long coherence times, reliable initialization by optical pumping, laser-driven single qubit control and detection, and entanglement via Coulomb interaction. The leading theme in generating a large-scale entanglement of trapped ions for practical quantum computation the so-called “Quantum CCD” technology where ions are stored in a vast, interconnected array of microscopic ion traps. Individual ions are then moved around the array to enable quantum logic gates between any and all qubits. While promising, this technology requires, among other things, exquisite control of ion motion through thousands of trapping zones, a hard task to say the least. We are investigating an alternative approach where photon-mediated entanglement of distant ions is added to the mix. In this modular architecture a vast array of interconnected microtraps is replaced by a set of small-scale (10-100 ions) single-zone traps linked together by photonic interconnects. These photonic links are formed by interfering and detecting single photons emitted by individual ions; the ions then become entangled in the process known as “entanglement swapping”. I will describe our recent progress in investigating this scheme.

Host: Rhonda Dzakpasu