Microsoft Edges Closer to Quantum Computer Based on Elusive Particle

Microsoft Edges Closer to Quantum Computer Based on Elusive Particle

March 29th, 2018

Disclosure: I am long Quantum Resistant Ledger (QRL).

Via: Bloomberg:

At Microsoft Corp.’s Dutch research facility at the Delft University of Technology, several large cylindrical metal tubes hang from the ceiling.

Each tube – a dilution refrigerator used to cool circuits down to temperatures colder than deep space – costs more than $500,000, and has helped Microsoft’s researchers create an elusive subatomic particle that the company hopes will serve as the building block of its effort to create commercially-viable quantum computers.

The scientists say they have clear evidence of the creation of Majorana fermions – an elementary particle that its own anti-particle –in a tiny wire that is composed of both semiconducting and superconducting materials, according to research published in the journal Nature Wednesday.

The unique properties of these fermions means that they could be used to create quantum computers with much lower error rates than the designs being trialed by rival companies, such as International Business Machines Corp. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google, that are also racing to bring quantum computers to market. Currently, those other designs produce too many errors in their calculations to be useful for practical applications, such as the ability to create new chemical catalysts or break the most popular forms of encryption.

Microsoft will now attempt to braid these tiny fermions to create qubits – the fundamental calculating hardware used in quantum computers. Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s chief executive officer, has said that quantum computing is one of three breakthrough technologies – the others are artificial intelligence and augmented reality – that will be critical to the future of the company. Microsoft hopes to eventually rent time on quantum computers to businesses through its cloud computing network.




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