How embracing Disorder in nanotechnology may lead to Quantum Machines
While most of us are just trying to keep up with the latest marvels of the digital age, like talking smart phones and robotic vacuum cleaners, some are focused instead on finding ways to reinvent computing altogether. One of the most promising pathways to this may emerge from the recent efforts to engineer ‘quantum machines’.
The quantum-mechanical nature of matter at the atomic scale may allow us to not only build information technologies with unprecedented levels of computational power, but also possibly lead us to discover and develop new ways of embracing the defects and disorder that nature has made common at the nanoscale. David Awschalom is an experimental physicist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, who has earned numerous awards for his work in the field of semiconductor spintronics. He and his team are working to make quantum machines a reality by mobilising atomic-scale defects in diamond and diamond-like materials to store and process information in a uniquely quantum-mechanical way. In his presentation at Falling Walls, Awschalom will discuss his latest work, some of the potential uses and the future challenges of these technologies.