Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Atom images raise quantum computer hopes - physics-math - 18 August 2010 - New Scientist

Atom images raise quantum computer hopes: "Now two teams, one led by Stefan Kuhr of the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics in Garching, Germany, the other by Markus Greiner of Harvard University, have taken a first step by imaging the individual rubidium atoms in an optical lattice. This is a challenge not just because the atoms are tiny, but also because photons from nearby atoms can interfere with each other, smearing out any pattern.

To overcome this, the teams studied the light pattern from a single atom. They then created an algorithm which could generate a composite of this pattern from different arrangements of a grid of atoms. By matching these simulations to the actual pattern seen, the algorithm could determine the arrangement of atoms (Nature, DOI: 10.1038/nature09378, Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1192368)."

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