A team of scientists at Linkoping University has developed a simulation of quantum computing that can work on traditional computers. The simulation is a model to show the functioning of quantum computers. The research teams are optimistic that their project will help in the development of quantum computing, a field that uses quantum theory and super-computing to perform calculations.
Understanding Quantum Computers.
Quantum Computers perform calculations by stressing on the probability of an object’s state before it is measured. They have the potential to process more data as compared to traditional computers, taking 0-1 seconds for performing operations. Traditional computers perform operations using the position of the physical state of the object. These computers use binary systems, 1 or 0 and its operations are based on one of these two positions.
Quantum Computers perform operations using the quantum state of an object to generate qubit. The states of the object which is being used are undefined properties before they have even been detected. These properties include the movement of electrons and the polarization of photons.
Quantum computers will soon enter the market as researchers are gearing up to turn the technology into something which can be used by everyone. A billion-dollar research effort in Sweden is aiming to bring the technology to surface within the next ten years. The EU has declared quantum computing as one of its flagship projects. Scientists believe that technology will become extremely important in the simulation of chemical, biological and physical systems which are not that easy even for the fastest supercomputers in this generation.
Professor Jan-Ake Larrson from the Division for Information Coding at the Department of Electrical Engineering, Linkoping University believes that the results of their work should be highly significant in determining how to build quantum computers. The simulation developed by the team will help users to understand the functioning of a quantum computer and why it is better than a traditional model.
We have shown that the major difference is that quantum computers have two degrees of freedom for each bit. By simulating an additional degree of freedom in a classical computer, we can run some of the algorithms at the same speed as they would achieve in a quantum computer, says Jan-Ake Larsson.
The simulation tool is called Quantum Simulation Logic or QSL. It simulates the operations of a quantum computer using a traditional computer.
How it works.
The smallest unit of data in a computer, a bit, works on the binary values 1 or 0, but a qubit can recognize all the values in between. Quantum Computers do not need to process several operations while carrying out calculations. The recently developed tool simulates the process by enabling to access one extra bit of freedom for each bit in processing calculations.
“Each bit has two degrees of freedom: it can be compared with a mechanical system in which each part has two degrees of freedom – position and speed. In this case, we deal with computation bits – which carry information about the result of the function, and phase bits – which carry information about the structure of the function”, Jan-Ake Larsson explains.
The researchers claim that operations run in the QSL are as fast as quantum computers. The results show that the higher speed in quantum computers comes from their ability to store, process and retrieve information in one additional information-carrying degree of freedom. This enables the researchers to better understand how quantum computers work. Also, this knowledge would help build quantum computers.
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