by Sophia Chen, New Scientist
We know what we’d like to use for the innards of future quantum computers: exotic things like pink diamonds and cold atoms. But getting these components to talk to each other has been a challenge. Now, researchers have come up with a way to allow one component to efficiently transmit information to another, without losing its quantum character.
Quantum computers are theoretically capable of running calculations exponentially faster than classical computers, and can be made by exploiting atoms, superconductors, diamond crystals and more. Each of these has its own strengths: atoms are better at storing information, while superconductors are better at processing it. A device linking these diverse systems together would combine their strengths and compensate for their weaknesses.
Once linked, these systems would talk to each other by sending and receiving photons. The photons would encode quantum states but, unlike the voltages and currents interpreted by a classical computer chip, they cannot be transmitted via copper wires.