Inside Quantum Technology

Singapore Researchers Uncover How Environment Can Impact Quantum Behaviors; Findings Could Lead to Design of Quantum Sensor Devices

(EurekaAlert) Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) researchers have uncovered how the environment can impact highly sensitive quantum behaviours like localiszation. Their findings, published in Chaos, could lead to future innovations in the design of superconducting materials and quantum devices, including super precise sensors.
For all its theoretical potential, one considerable practical challenge remains when producing quantum measuring devices: controlling how they respond to the environment. Real devices are extremely sensitive to noise, which at best reduces their level of precision and at worst leads to unacceptable levels of error. When it comes to crafting ultra-precise sensors, such noise could overwhelm any useful signals.
Understanding how quantum devices respond to noise would help researchers find new ways to protect them from noise, making novel measurement and sensing technologies more feasible. Beyond increasing their accuracy, researchers may even be able to give quantum devices new properties. “If you could tune the amount of noise that these devices experience, you can make them function very differently and get an even more interesting device,” explained Associate Professor Dario Poletti from SUTD, who led the study.
“There are already quantum devices out there, and we will likely see more and more of them,” Poletti said. “Devices are never truly isolated from their environments, so we would like to better understand how they can work in conjunction with the environment.”
“Now the quest is to dig deeper and look for different systems, or go towards real materials and see what else can happen there,” he added. “This kind of research is done over many years. We’re trying to build fundamental knowledge and tools so that eventually, industry can take over.”

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