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Concept# Trapped ion quantum computer

Summary

A trapped ion quantum computer is one proposed approach to a large-scale quantum computer. Ions, or charged atomic particles, can be confined and suspended in free space using electromagnetic fields. Qubits are stored in stable electronic states of each ion, and quantum information can be transferred through the collective quantized motion of the ions in a shared trap (interacting through the Coulomb force). Lasers are applied to induce coupling between the qubit states (for single qubit operations) or coupling between the internal qubit states and the external motional states (for entanglement between qubits).
The fundamental operations of a quantum computer have been demonstrated experimentally with the currently highest accuracy in trapped ion systems. Promising schemes in development to scale the system to arbitrarily large numbers of qubits include transporting ions to spatially distinct locations in an array of ion traps, building large entangled states via photonically connected networks of remotely entangled ion chains, and combinations of these two ideas. This makes the trapped ion quantum computer system one of the most promising architectures for a scalable, universal quantum computer. As of April 2018, the largest number of particles to be controllably entangled is 20 trapped ions.
The first implementation scheme for a controlled-NOT quantum gate was proposed by Ignacio Cirac and Peter Zoller in 1995, specifically for the trapped ion system. The same year, a key step in the controlled-NOT gate was experimentally realized at NIST Ion Storage Group, and research in quantum computing began to take off worldwide.
In 2021, researchers from the University of Innsbruck presented a quantum computing demonstrator that fits inside two 19-inch server racks, the world's first quality standards-meeting compact trapped ion quantum computer.
The electrodynamic quadrupole ion trap currently used in trapped ion quantum computing research was invented in the 1950s by Wolfgang Paul (who received the Nobel Prize for his work in 1989).

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Trapped ion quantum computer

A trapped ion quantum computer is one proposed approach to a large-scale quantum computer. Ions, or charged atomic particles, can be confined and suspended in free space using electromagnetic fields. Qubits are stored in stable electronic states of each ion, and quantum information can be transferred through the collective quantized motion of the ions in a shared trap (interacting through the Coulomb force).

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