(Buffalo.edu) A University of Buffalo-led research team has developed a “traffic light” that can bring quantum waves to a halt. The advancement could be key to harnessing the potential of the atomic world, eventually leading to breakthroughs in computing, medicine, cryptography, materials science and other applications.
n the study, the team “used the very atoms that make up the crystal structure of the semiconductor materials that we study to either impede the passage of electrons, or to allow them to pass freely, essentially making a ‘traffic light’ for these quantum particles. We do this by ‘shaking’ these atoms controllably, through the application of small electrical signals to our devices,” says Jon Bird, co-lead author of the study.
The ability to control subatomic particles, such as electrons and photons, is key to the development of quantum technologies, especially quantum computers.