Research led by the University of Kent and the STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory has discovered a new and rare topological superconductor, LaPt3P. This discovery can be very important for the future operation of quantum computers.
Superconductors are important materials that can conduct electricity without resistance when cooled below a certain temperature, making them highly desirable in societies where energy consumption needs to be reduced.
Superconductors show quantum properties on the scale of everyday objects, are very attractive candidates for building computers that use quantum physics to store data and perform computing operations, and are specific. Much better than the best supercomputers on the task. As a result, leading high-tech companies such as Google, IBM, and Microsoft are in increasing demand for industrial-scale quantum computers using superconductors.
However, the basic unit (qubit) of a quantum computer is extremely sensitive, and quantum properties are lost due to collisions with electromagnetic fields, heat, and air molecules. Protection from these can be achieved by using a special class of superconductors called topological superconductors to create more elastic qubits.
Topological superconductors such as LaPt3P, newly discovered by muon spin relaxation experiments and extensive theoretical analysis, are extremely rare and of great value to the quantum computing industry of the future.
Two different sample sets were prepared at the University of Warwick and ETH Zurich to ensure that their properties are sample- and instrument-independent. Next, muon experiments were performed at two different types of muon facilities. ISIS Pulse Neutron and Muon Source from STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, and PSI from Switzerland.
Dr. Sudeep Kumar Ghosh, Principal Investigator and Lever Hume Early Career Fellow in Kent, said: ‘This discovery of the topological superconductor LaPt3P has great potential in the field of quantum computing. The discovery of such rare and desirable ingredients demonstrates the importance of muon research to the everyday world around us.
The paper “Chiral singlet superconductivity of weakly correlated metal LaPt3P” Nature Communications (University of Kent: Dr. Sudeep K. Ghosh, STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory: Dr. Pabitra K. Biswas, Dr. Adrian D. Hillier, University of Warwick-Dr. Geetha Balakrishnan, Dr. Martin R. Lees, Dr. Daniel A. Mayoh; Paul Scherrer Institute : Dr. Charles Baines; Zhejiang University of Technology: Dr. Xiaofeng Xu; ETH Zurich: Dr. Nikolai D. Zhigadlo; Southwest University of Science and Technology: Dr. Jianzhou Zhao).
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New discoveries of rare superconductors may be essential for the future of quantum computing
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