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Nobel Prize 2012 in Physics: a door open to quantum computer!

The Nobel Prize winners 2012 for physics have been announced today. It goes to a French-American duo for quantum physic.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2012 was awarded jointly to Serge Haroche from France and American David J. Wineland for ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems“. This research has led to the construction of extremely precise clocks and helped scientists take the first steps toward building superfast computers.

Their ground-breaking methods have enabled this field of research to take the very first steps towards building a new type of superfast computer based on quantum physics,” the academy said. “The research has also led to the construction of extremely precise clocks that could become the future basis for a new standard of time.”

A quantum particle is one that is isolated from everything else. In this situation, an atom or electron or photon takes on strange properties. For example, it can be in two places at once, or can hold multiple states at once (such as energy). It behaves in some ways like a wave. But these properties are instantly changed when it interacts with something else, such as when somebody observes it.

In an ordinary computer, information is represented in bits, each of which is either a zero or a one. But in a quantum computer, an individual particle can essentially represent a zero and a one at the same time. If scientists can make such particles work together, certain kinds of calculations could be done with blazing speed.

 
 
 
Image source:
http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/physics/laureates/2012/press.html
http://www.nobelprize.org/images/front_slideshow/haroche-wineland-slide.jpg?1349815868059
http://www.cs4fn.org/quantum/images/particles.jpg
 
 
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2 Comments on “Nobel Prize 2012 in Physics: a door open to quantum computer!”

  1. Drew Maravilla October 24, 2012 at 11:20 am #

    I just want to tell you that I truly liked your web blog. Very likely I’m want to bookmark your blog . You amazingly come with really good writings. Thanks a lot for sharing your web page.

  2. Mark Oller December 8, 2012 at 12:01 am #

    Have you never heard of D-Wave Systems Inc and Geordie Rose? It will start marketing a 512 qubit adiabatic quantum in December, and I am writing this on December 8, 2012. If you doubt whether this is a true quantum computer, download “D-Wave makes HPCwire’s top 10 best stories of 2011.” Dec 23 Posted by Geordie
    http://dwave.wordpress.com/2011/12/23/d-wave-makes-hpcwires-top-10-best-stories-of-2011/

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