Science

News and Articles

Tue11122019

Last update07:19:32 PM GMT

Point defects in super-chilled diamonds may offer stable candidates for quantum computing bits

  • PDF

Like

(Oct. 11, 2011) — Diamond, nature's hardest known substance, is essential for our modern mechanical world -- drills, cutters, and grinding wheels exploit the durability of diamonds to power a variety of industries. But diamonds have properties that may also make them excellent materials to enable the next generation of solid-state quantum computers and electrical and magnetic sensors.

To further explore diamonds' quantum computing potential, researchers from the University of Science and Technology of China tested the properties of a common defect found in diamond: the nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center.

Consisting of a nitrogen atom impurity paired with a 'hole' where a carbon atom is absent from the matrix structure, the NV center has the potential to store information because of the predictable way in which electrons confined in the center interact with electromagnetic waves. The research team probed the energy level properties of the trapped electrons by cooling the diamonds to an extremely chilly 5.6 degrees Kelvin and then measuring the magnetic resonance and fluorescent emission spectra. The team also measured the same spectra at gradually warmer increments, up to 295 degrees Kelvin.

The results, as reported in the AIP's journal Applied Physics Letters, show that at temperatures below 100 Kelvin the electrons' transition energies, or the energies required to get from one energy level to the next, were stable. Shifting transition energies could make quantum mechanical manipulations tricky, so cooler temperatures may aid the study and development of diamonds for quantum computation and ultra-sensitive detectors, the authors write.

Recommend this story on Facebook, Twitter,
and Google +1:

Other bookmarking and sharing tools:


Story Source:

The above story is reprinted (with editorial adaptations by JournalOfSciences.com staff) from materials provided by American Institute of Physics, via EurekAlert!, a service of AAAS.

Journal Reference:

  1. X.-D. Chen, C.-H. Dong, F.-W. Sun, C.-L. Zou, J.-M. Cui, Z.-F. Han, and G.-C Guo. Temperature dependent energy level shifts of nitrogen-vacancy centers in diamond. Applied Physics Letters, 2011

Note: If no author is given, the source is cited instead.

Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of or its staff.