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Quantum Memories May Lead to Faster, More Secure Computers

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University of Delaware professor Virginia Lorenz with Jamy Moreno and Seth Meiselman

From left, University of Delaware assistant professor of physics and astronomy Virginia Lorenz, with graduate students Jamy Moreno and Seth Meiselman.

Credit: University of Delaware

Future communications networks could be based on quantum memories, which store data in a pulse of light and are the focus of research by University of Delaware professor Virginia Lorenz. Since in a quantum memory the bits of information can exist as 1 and 0 simultaneously, the memory can store the properties of a quantum particle in both states.

Quantum memories' potential advantages to computing include secure communication, as quantum states can be used to transmit information in a manner that thwarts undetected eavesdropping. Another benefit of quantum memories is faster processing.

Lorenz and colleagues at the University of Oxford recently co-authored the Nature Photonics article, "Towards High-Speed Optical Quantum Memories." The researchers have constructed a prototype quantum memory that encodes information in an ultrafast flash of laser light, with a large number of gaseous atoms used as the storage medium. The next step in the quantum memory project involves the storage and retrieval of a photon.

From University of Delaware
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Abstracts Copyright © 2010 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA



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