Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Competition in the Quantum World

The physicists engineer a classical environment, which generates dissipative dynamics, leading to fragile long-range quantum mechanical correlations between distant particles.Graphics: IQOQI/Ritsch
The physicists engineer a classical environment, which generates dissipative dynamics, leading to fragile long-range quantum mechanical correlations between distant particles.

Graphics: IQOQI/Ritsch

Abstract:
Innsbruck physicists led by Rainer Blatt and Peter Zoller experimentally gained a deep insight into the nature of quantum mechanical phase transitions. They are the first scientists that simulated the competition between two rival dynamical processes at a novel type of transition between two quantum mechanical orders. They have published the results of their work in the journal Nature Physics.

Competition in the Quantum World

Innsbruck, Austria | Posted on May 20th, 2013

"When water boils, its molecules are released as vapor. We call this change of the physical state of matter a phase transition," explains Sebastian Diehl from the Institute of Theoretical Physics at the University of Innsbruck. Together with his colleagues from the Institute for Experimental Physics and the theorist Markus Mueller from the Complutense University of Madrid, he studied the transition between two quantum mechanical orders in a way never before observed. The quantum physicists in Innsbruck use a new device for the experiment, which is currently considered to be one of the most promising developments in quantum physics: a quantum simulator. It is based on a small-scale quantum computer and can simulate physical phenomena a classical computer cannot investigate efficiently. "Such a quantum simulator allows us to experimentally study quantum phenomena in many-body systems that are coupled to their environment," explain experimental physicists Philipp Schindler and Thomas Monz.

Observing the competition

With just a few trapped ions the scientists simulate the complex physical processes of quantum mechanical phase transitions. To achieve this, they have to manipulate and control the particles with high accuracy; the experimental physicists in Innsbruck are world leaders in this field. "For this experiment we use a programmable quantum simulator with up to five ions," says Philipp Schindler. One of the particles is used as a means to couple the system to the classical environment in a controlled manner. The other ions are used for carrying out quantum operations. "We call this an open quantum simulator. Usually we want to suppress this coupling because it destroys the fragile quantum effects in the system. Here, however, we use it to bring order into the quantum mechanical system," explains Schindler. "In our specific case, we engineer a classical environment, which generates dissipative dynamics, leading to fragile long-range quantum mechanical correlations between distant particles." In the following step, this dynamics is then set in competition with a different type of interactions, which interrupts the dynamics that create the quantum mechanical order. "By doing this, we are able to observe how the competition between these two processes takes place and what precisely occurs right at the transition between two distinct orders of matter," explains theoretical physicist Sebastian Diehl.

Error reduction

The experiment demands an enormous degree of precision, which requires immediate error corrections to be able to simulate the physical processes correctly. Since a comprehensive error correction, as developed for quantum computers, involves considerable resource overheads, the physicists in Innsbruck chose another promising alternative path. They identified the most important sources of error occurring during the simulation and specifically targeted them. Schindler is convinced: "This way of error reduction will surely set an example for other experiments. While general quantum error correction remains a long-term goal, we may be able to successfully use this type of error correction a lot sooner for reliable quantum simulation of larger systems," adds Markus Mueller.

Interweaving theory with experiment

Such an experimental study of the nature of quantum mechanical phase transitions is internationally unique. It was only possible because advanced experimental know-how was successfully combined with theoretical research, which was carried out in close collaboration between physicists from Innsbruck and Madrid. "This link between theoretical and experimental physicists who work closely together, and in Innsbruck under one roof, is possible in very few places. It is also one of the great strengths of quantum physics research carried out in Innsbruck. And this research, once again, led us into an area of physics that hadn't been explored before," says Rainer Blatt. "In this experiment the physics of many-body systems is successfully simulated with a few trapped ions. This clearly shows the potential and the possibilities of quantum simulation," adds Peter Zoller.

####

About University of Innsbruck
The University of Innsbruck was founded in 1669 and is one of Austria's oldest universities. Today, with almost 3,500 staff and 23,000 students, it is a place of learning that unifies tradition with future, progress and the joy of discovery. The University of Innsbruck is western Austria's largest institution of higher education and research and serves as major university for the regions of Tyrol, Vorarlberg and South Tyrol and the state of Liechtenstein. At their 15 faculties, scientist are researching and teaching in the various fields of Arts and Letters, Law, Social Sciences and Economics, Catholic Theology, Natural Sciences, Civil Engineering and Architecture.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Markus Müller
Departamento de Física Teórica
Universidad Complutense de Madrid
+34 91394 5016

Copyright © AlphaGalileo

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Full bibliographic information

Related News Press

News and information

Bosch announces high-performance MEMS acceleration sensors for wearables June 27th, 2017

Nanometrics to Participate in the 9th Annual CEO Investor Summit 2017: Accredited investor and publishing research analyst event held concurrently with SEMICON West and Intersolar 2017 in San Francisco June 27th, 2017

NMRC, University of Nottingham chooses the Quorum Q150 coater for its reliable and reproducible film thickness when coating samples with iridium June 27th, 2017

Picosun’s ALD solutions enable novel high-speed memories June 27th, 2017

Physics

In atomic propellers, quantum phenomena can mimic everyday physics June 1st, 2017

Unveiling the quantum necklace: Researchers simulate quantum necklace-like structures in superfluids May 26th, 2017

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

Discoveries

Physicists make quantum leap in understanding life's nanoscale machinery June 27th, 2017

Picosun’s ALD solutions enable novel high-speed memories June 27th, 2017

Atomic imperfections move quantum communication network closer to reality June 25th, 2017

Research accelerates quest for quicker, longer-lasting electronics: UC Riverside-led research makes topological insulators magnetic well above room temperatures June 25th, 2017

Announcements

Bosch announces high-performance MEMS acceleration sensors for wearables June 27th, 2017

Nanometrics to Participate in the 9th Annual CEO Investor Summit 2017: Accredited investor and publishing research analyst event held concurrently with SEMICON West and Intersolar 2017 in San Francisco June 27th, 2017

NMRC, University of Nottingham chooses the Quorum Q150 coater for its reliable and reproducible film thickness when coating samples with iridium June 27th, 2017

Picosun’s ALD solutions enable novel high-speed memories June 27th, 2017

Quantum nanoscience

Physicists make quantum leap in understanding life's nanoscale machinery June 27th, 2017

Atomic imperfections move quantum communication network closer to reality June 25th, 2017

Oxford Instruments congratulates Lancaster University for inaugurating the IsoLab, built for studying quantum systems June 20th, 2017

In atomic propellers, quantum phenomena can mimic everyday physics June 1st, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project