The physicist’s team from New York University, University of Buffalo and Wayne State University has discovered a new state of matter which they believe to bear the potential to increase the storage capacity of electronic devices.
According to Javad Shabani, an assistant professor of physics at New York University, Their research has succeeded in revealing the experimental evidence for a new state of matter which they call topological superconductivity. This new topological state can be manipulated in ways that could both improve the speed of quantum computing and boost storage.
The discovery has not yet appeared in an academic journal but has been published in arXiv, which is a platform for preprints approved for posting with moderation without full peer review. The paper has been titled, “Phase signature of a topological transition in Josephson Junctions,” and it squarely focuses on the realm of quantum computing. Quantum computing allows computers to operate exponentially fast computations using qubits: advances made upon the basics of computer memory, orbits.
“Bits are binary, read in 1s and 0s. Qubits, though, allow for computers to read any number between 0 and 1, allowing for much faster calculations” stands as the simplest description to the qubits function.
During this research, the team was able to witness the transition of a quantum state from its conventional state to a new topological state, which is to say it took on new geometric properties. Topological states can change during everyday life as well, like when a piece of paper goes from having no rips to being ripped halfway down. They were able to study the quantum state’s change by observing the energy barrier between the two states.
Within this state of transformation, scientists observed the Majorana particles, named after 20th-century Italian theoretical physicist Ettore Majorana.
“The Italian scientists theorized the particles, which act as their own antiparticles, in 1937. Scientists see them as a potential storage for qubits, with the ability to keep quantum information in a special computation space, safe from outside environmental noise.”
The wonder is that there is no natural storage material for these storage particles. But this new state of matter stores the Majorana particles, which could hold them intact and the Majorana particles could then store qubits.
“The new discovery of topological superconductivity in a two-dimensional platform paves the way for building scalable topological qubits to not only store quantum information, but also to manipulate the quantum states that are free of error,” says Shabani.