June 9, 2012


(June 9, 2015)  The quantum computer is a futuristic machine that could operate at speeds even more mind-boggling than the world’s fastest super-computers.

Research involving physicist Mike Thewalt of Simon Fraser University offers a new step towards making quantum computing a reality, through the unique properties of highly enriched and highly purified silicon.

Quantum computers right now exist pretty much in physicists’ concepts, and theoretical research. There are some basic quantum computers in existence, but nobody yet can build a truly practical one—or really knows how.

Such computers will harness the powers of atoms and sub-atomic particles (ions, photons, electrons) to perform memory and processing tasks, thanks to strange sub-atomic properties.

What Thewalt and colleagues at Oxford University and in Germany have found is that their special silicon allows processes to take place and be observed in a solid state that scientists used to think required a near-perfect vacuum.