The largest technology concerns are fiercely competing for the palm of priority in the commercialization of such machines. Microsoft has just taken a giant leap forward in realizing this beautiful vision. Engineers from Redmond together with scientists from the University of Sydney in Australia have developed a new quantum chip that is capable of controlling thousands of qubits.
Qubits are the basic units of quantum information that are equivalent to binary bits in a classical computer. The more qubits a quantum computer uses, the greater its performance. It all sounds beautiful, but getting it into practice is a very difficult task.
Currently, such machines bring to mind computers from the 1940s, and not futuristic devices that will revolutionize the world. Each qubit must be controlled by a wiring harness. Its Science club typically run from room temperature electronics shelves to cubits at the end of a refrigerator that are at a temperature close to absolute zero. This technology allows you to control approx. 50 qubits. However, this is not enough to run the sophisticated simulations scientists dream of.
Microsoft engineers developed a completely different solution. The whole new system consists of a control system they call gooseberries. It enables the scaling of the control system and alleviates the bottleneck of control cables for information transfer. The chip only uses a small amount of energy, so it doesn't heat the qubits themselves. This makes the system more efficient.
The new quantum circuit is configured with digital input signals at room temperature and uses the cells of an integrated circuit. They are based on switched capacitors to generate static and dynamic voltages for parallel control of qubits.
Microsoft boasts that it is currently the most complex electronic system in the world, having 100,000 transistors and operating at a temperature close to absolute zero, i.e. at minus 273.05 degrees Celsius. In the coming months, scientists plan to conduct a series of tests on their new system.