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From Lab to Fab: New Manufacturing Method Shows Promise in Scaling Quantum Computing

By IQT News posted 21 Jan 2021

(AllAboutCircuits) Using transistors as qubits, researchers have achieved single-electron operation in foundry-fabricated silicon—a potential breakthrough in quantum computing manufacturing. While spin-based quantum computers have been developed on small scales, to this point they’ve only been fabricated in controlled, clean, academic environments. This is currently one of the hurdles that needs to be overcome in order to make quantum computers feasible and scalable.
Researchers from the University of Copenhagen, along with partners from the French group CEA-Leti, have been working together on a new method to fabricate electron-spin based quantum computers in an industrial setting.
Those researchers have now shown a way to achieve quantum dot-enabled spin-based qubits in silicon. The researchers were able to use traditional silicon transistor-based fabrication techniques to demonstrate “single-electron occupations in all four quantum dots of a 2 x 2 split-gate silicon device fabricated entirely by 300-mm-wafer foundry processes.”
A significant aspect of this research was the ability to achieve a 2D array of qubits. Bringing qubits to the second dimension, meaning that each qubit can interact with one another, is important for error correction in quantum computing.
This research may represent some significant achievements in the world of quantum computing. First, by proving a silicon-based scheme, the research has introduced the possibility of foundry-manufacturable quantum computers, a big improvement from controlled academic environments. This opens the possibility for these computers to be manufactured easily and at a great scale. Beyond this, the research was able to bring 2D arrays of qubits to life, another necessity for the future of quantum computing.

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