The Quantum Design Automation Lab, founded in late 2005 and headed by Dr. Morteza Saheb Zamani and Dr. Mehdi Sedighi, conducts research in all areas of quantum design automation. For more information about our research areas see the publications of the group.
The Future of Quantum Computing
Matthias Steffen, Lieven M. K. Vandersypen, and Isaac L. Chuang, "Toward Quantum Computation: A Five-Qubit Quantum Processor," IEEE Micro, pp. 24-36, March-April 2001.
Despite the promise of the small quantum computers implemented to date, extraordinary challenges remain to be solved before quantum processors become useful. While various proposed techniques will work straightforwardly up to several tens of qubits (for certain applications) but are difficult to scale beyond several hundred. Meaningful quantum computation applications (known today) require thousands of qubits on a perfect machine, and millions if error correction is utilized to compensate for inevitable errors. Therefore, the challenge is to engineer such systems to make them behave coherently and effectively to implement quantum circuits.
Hand in hand with the desire for large-scale quantum computers is finding uses for them other than factoring, search, and simulation. Information-theoretic tasks such as cryptography, distributed computation, and communication are key areas for quantum information science. Applications discovered so far include superdense coding (sending two bits with one qubit), state teleportation, and fast clock synchronization. However, whether quantum-assisted protocols can be put to practical use remains to be seen. Driving this field is a tremendous desire by researchers to understand how and why quantum resources can help information processing. Perhaps the most striking observation is the quantum computing community’s consensus after over the future years’ work in this area: It might be uncertain that a practical quantum computer will ever be built but, to our best knowledge, there are no principles of physics prohibiting large-scale quantum computing. Thus, if we fail in implementing such machines, we stand to gain new understanding of fundamental physics. On the other hand, if we succeed, the foundations of computer science (namely, the modern version of Church’s theorem) must be overhauled to say that the complexity of a problem depends on the laws of physics. While the answers to these questions might lie still decades into the future, continued experimental progress in realizing small quantum processors will provide useful insight into the realm of quantum computing and give us a glimpse of what may lie ahead.
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