The second quantum revolution: the promise of quantum technology

Join Prof David Jamieson, from the School of Physics, University of Melbourne and ARC Centre of Excellence for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology, for this FREE Public Lecture.

Every day we effortlessly apply the products of the first quantum revolution to surf the web, read a newspaper or keep in touch with family and friends. The products are computers, lasers and optical fibres all of which depend on quantum mechanics which gives us the tools to understand not only the material
building blocks of the universe but also the materials for semiconductor computer chips, light emitting diodes and marvellous medical diagnostics. These products of the first quantum revolution have revolutionised our society.

Now we are embarking on a second quantum revolution that aims to engineer devices that directly exploit the strange laws of quantum mechanics including superposition, entanglement and spooky action at a distance. In 1959 Richard Feynman first theorised that these quantum effects could be used in computing and only now are the first simple quantum processors started appearing. The rise of quantum computing offers the promise of new machines that exploit the fundamental laws of quantum mechanics for revolutionary capabilities to perform tasks difficult or impossible by classical machines. This lecture looks at the origin of the strange laws of quantum mechanics that are driving this second revolution and the work being done in Australia to build large scale arrays of single atom quantum bits in silicon crystals for a quantum computer device within the next five years.