In physics, quantum is the smallest number of any physical entity (physical property) involved in the interaction. The basic concept that physical properties can be “quantified” is called “quantitative hypothesis”. This means that the size of physical properties can only use discrete values composed of an integer multiple of a quantum.
For example, a photon is a single quantum of light (or any other form of electromagnetic radiation). Similarly, the energy of electrons bound in atoms is quantified and can only exist in some discrete values. (Actually, atoms and substances are usually stable because electrons can only exist at discrete energy levels within the atom.)
Quantization is one of the foundations of the broader quantum mechanical physics. Quantification of energy and its effect on the interaction of energy and matter (quantum electrodynamics) is part of the basic framework for understanding and describing nature.
Quantification was first discovered in electromagnetic radiation. It describes the fundamental aspects of energy, not just photons. To keep the theory consistent with the experiment, Max Planck proposed that electromagnetic energy is absorbed or sent in discrete data packets or quantum form.
What is quantum computing?
Quantum computers can stimulate breakthroughs in science, life-saving drugs, machine learning methods that can diagnose diseases more quickly, materials that can make devices and structures more efficient, financial strategies that can live after retirement, and resources that can quickly guide resources Algorithms, such as ambulances.
But what exactly is quantum computing? What is needed to achieve these quantum breakthroughs? This is what you need to know.
Every day we experience the benefits of classic computing. However, there are challenges that today’s systems cannot solve. For problems exceeding a certain scale and complexity, we do not have enough computing power on earth to solve them.
To have the opportunity to solve some of these problems, we need a new type of calculation. General quantum computers use superimposed and entangled quantum mechanical phenomena to create states that are scaled exponentially by a certain number of qubits or qubits.
All computing systems rely on the basic ability to store and process information. Current computers manipulate various bits, which store information as binary 0 and 1 states. Quantum computers use quantum-mechanical phenomena to manipulate information.
However, they will not erase traditional computers. Using classic machines is still the simplest and most economical solution to most problems. But quantum computers are expected to drive exciting progress in everything from materials science to pharmaceutical research.
The company is already experimenting with them to develop lighter and more powerful electric vehicle batteries and help manufacture new medicines.
The secret of the quantum computer’s powerful functions lies in its ability to generate and manipulate bits & qubits.
What is a qubit?
Today’s computers use bit-representing 1 or 0 electrical or optical pulse streams. From tweets and emails to iTunes songs and YouTube videos, everything is a long string of these binary numbers.
On the other hand, quantum computers use qubits, usually subatomic particles such as electrons or photons. Generating and managing qubits is a scientific and engineering challenge.
Some companies, such as IBM, Google, and Rigetti Computing, use superconducting circuits that are cooled to a temperature that is colder than deep space. Other devices, such as IonQ, trap a single atom in an electromagnetic field on a silicon chip in an ultra-high vacuum chamber. In both cases, the goal is to isolate the qubits in a controlled quantum state.
Quantum bits have some weird quantum properties, which means that one of their connected groups can provide more processing power than the same number of binary bits. One of these characteristics is called superposition, and the other is called entanglement.
What is entanglement?
Researchers can generate “entangled” pairs of qubits, which means that the two members of the pair exist in a single quantum state. Changing the state of one qubit will immediately change the state of another qubit predictably. This happens even if they are far apart.
No one knows the principle of entanglement. It even confuses Einstein, who was once known for “weird movements from a distance”. But this is the key to the powerful functions of quantum computers.
In traditional computers, doubling the number of bits will double the processing power. However, due to entanglement, the additional quantum bits will be added to the quantum machine, and its quantum computing power will increase exponentially.
Quantum computers use entangled qubits to play a role in a quantum daisy chain. The ability of these machines to use specially designed quantum algorithms to speed up calculations is why people are so concerned about their potential. That’s good news.
The bad news is that due to decoherence, quantum machines are more prone to errors than traditional computers.
What is Superposition?
A qubit can represent many possible combinations of 1 and 0 at the same time. This ability to be in multiple states at the same time is called superposition. To make the qubits overlap, the researchers processed them using precision lasers or microbeams.
Because of this counterintuitive phenomenon, quantum computers with several qubits overlapping can process a large number of potential results simultaneously.
The final result of the calculation only appears after measuring the qubit, which immediately causes its quantum state to “collapse” to 1 or 0.
What is decoherence?
How the interaction of qubits with the environment causes their quantum behavior to decay and eventually disappear is called decoherence.
Their quantum states are very fragile. The smallest vibrations or temperature changes (in quantum speech, interference is called “noise”) may cause them to get out of superposition before the work is done correctly. This is why researchers do their best to protect qubits from outside influences in those supercooled refrigerators and vacuum chambers.
However, despite their great efforts, the noise can still cause many errors to sneak into the calculation. Intelligent quantum algorithms can compensate for some of them, and adding more qubits can also help.
However, creating a single, highly reliable standard qubit (called a “logic” qubit) may cost thousands of standard qubits. This will greatly weaken the computing power of quantum computers.
What is quantum hegemony?
At this point, quantum computers can perform mathematical calculations, which is beyond the reach of even the most powerful supercomputers.
It is unclear how many qubits are needed to achieve this goal because researchers are always looking for new algorithms to improve the performance of classic machines, and supercomputing hardware is also constantly improving.
But researchers and companies are working hard to fight for this title and have tested it on some of the world’s most powerful supercomputers.
In the field of research, there is much debate about the importance of achieving this milestone. The company has begun experimenting with quantum computers produced by companies such as IBM, Rigetti, and Canadian company D-Wave, rather than waiting to announce hegemony.
Chinese companies such as Alibaba also provide access to quantum machines. Some companies are buying quantum computers, while others are using computers available through cloud computing services.
First, where are quantum computers most useful?
One of the most promising applications of quantum computers is to simulate the behavior of matter down to the molecular level. Automakers such as Volkswagen and Daimler are using quantum computers to simulate the chemical composition of electric vehicle batteries to help find new ways to improve their performance.
Pharmaceutical companies are using them to analyze and compare compounds that may lead to new drugs.
These machines can also solve optimization problems because they can handle a large number of potential solutions very quickly. For example, Airbus is using them to help calculate the most fuel-efficient ascent and descent paths for aircraft.
Volkswagen also launched a service that can calculate the best routes for city buses and taxis to minimize traffic congestion. Some researchers also believe that these machines can be used to accelerate artificial intelligence.
It may take many years to realize the full potential of quantum computers. Universities and companies engaged in these jobs are facing a shortage of skilled researchers in this field, as well as suppliers of certain key components. But if these strange new computers can fulfill their promises, then they can change the entire industry and accelerate global innovation.