Engineers at Caltech have developed an approach for quantum storage. It could help pave the way for the development of large-scale optical quantum networks. The new system relies on nuclear spins—the angular momentum of an atom’s nucleus oscillating collectively as a spin wave. This collective oscillation effectively chains up several atoms to store information.
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Why is this important?
Quantum networking is a hot topic in the world of physics, and for good reason. If it can be perfected, it could offer a means of communicating with absolute security. But there's one big problem: quantum networks require a way to store data, and current methods are far from perfect. Now, researchers have come up with a new storage technique that could finally make quantum networking a reality. These quantum networks would connect quantum computers through a system that operates at a quantum, rather than classical, level. As they can with classical computers, engineers would like to be able to connect multiple quantum computers to share data and work together creating a “quantum internet.” This would open the door to several applications, including the ability to solve computations that are too large to be handled by a single quantum computer, as well as the establishment of unbreakably secure communications using quantum cryptography.
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