Synopsis: A File Variety of Atoms Trapped in a Sample

Could 20, 2019

Researchers entice 111 impartial atoms in a predefined, defect-free motif utilizing a brand new methodology that would, within the foreseeable future, management a million such atoms.

Synopsis figure

D. Ohl de Mello et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. (2019)

Impartial atoms trapped in an array of optical traps can act as qubits for quantum computing functions. However first, researchers must precisely place the atoms throughout the array to create defect-free patterns that they’ll then manipulate and use for calculations. In 2018, researchers organized 72 atoms in varied motifs, together with a knot and a dice. Now Gerhard Birkl and colleagues on the Technical College of Darmstadt in Germany reveal a brand new methodology for patterning atoms that takes that quantity to a file 111. They are saying that their methodology must be simply scalable, probably to 1 million atoms or extra.

Birkl and colleagues cooled a cloud of rubidium atoms to 100 𝜇K. They then loaded the atoms right into a microtrap array—a whole lot of laser traps organized in a sq. lattice that they created by directing a laser beam by means of an array of microlenses. Initially every entice contained just a few atoms. To scale back this quantity to 1, the staff used a way referred to as collisional blockade to take away pairs of atoms from every website. Websites that originally housed an odd variety of atoms have been left with precisely one. These with a fair quantity ended up with zero. The staff then moved single atoms to any empty website of their goal sample utilizing laser tweezers.

Utilizing their methodology, the staff created a 10-by-10-atom sq., a checkerboard manufactured from 105 atoms, and two interconnected squares that contained 111 atoms. They’re now engaged on patterns containing 1000 atoms. Birkl says that the one roadblock to arranging bigger numbers of atoms is monetary—to create extra entice websites, they might want to buy extra highly effective lasers.

This analysis is printed in Bodily Evaluation Letters.

–Katherine Wright

Katherine Wright is a Senior Editor of Physics.

Topic Areas

Atomic and Molecular PhysicsQuantum Physics

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