(InterestingEngineering) Stanford physicists have developed a “quantum microphone” capable of measuring phonons. The device may see the introduction of quantum computers that operate by manipulating sound rather than light, making them smaller and more efficient.
“We expect this device to allow new types of quantum sensors, transducers and storage devices for future quantum machines,” said study leader Amir Safavi-Naeini, an assistant professor of applied physics at Stanford’s School of Humanities and Sciences.
The device has been referred to as the “world’s most sensitive microphone” and consists of an invention capable of measuring Fock states, and therefore the number of phonons. Fock states represent the energy of a mechanical system.