A benchmark for single-electron circuits

January 26, 2021

Manipulating individual electrons with the goal of employing quantum effects offers new possibilities and greater precision in electronics. However, these single-electron circuits are governed by the laws of quantum mechanics, meaning that deviations from error-free operation still occur - albeit (in the best possible scenario) only very rarely. Thus, insights into both the physical origin the and metrological aspects of this fundamental uncertainty are crucial for the further development of quantum circuitry. To this end, scientists from PTB and the University of Latvia have collaborated to develop a statistical testing methodology. Their results have been published in the journal Nature Communications.

Single-electron circuits are already used as electric-current quantum standards and in quantum-computer prototypes. In these miniaturized quantum circuits, interactions and noise impede the investigation of the fundamental uncertainties and measuring them is a challenge, even for the metrological precision of the measurement apparatus.

In the field of quantum computers, a testing procedure also referred to as a "benchmark" is frequently used in which the operating principle and fidelity of the entire circuit are evaluated via the accumulation of errors following a sequence of operations. Based on this principle, researchers from PTB and the University of Latvia have now developed a benchmark for single-electron circuits. Here, the circuit's fidelity is described by the random steps of an error signal recorded by an integrated sensor while the circuit repeatedly executes an operation. The statistical analysis of this "random walk" can be used to identify the rare but unavoidable errors when individual quantum particles are manipulated.

By means of this "random-walk benchmark", the transfer of individual electrons was investigated in a circuit consisting of single-electron pumps developed at PTB as primary standards for realizing the ampere, an SI base unit. In this experiment, sensitive detectors record the error signal with single-electron resolution. The statistical analysis made possible by counting individual particles not only shows fundamental limitations of the circuit's fidelity induced by external noise and temporal correlations but also provides a robust measure of assessing errors in applied quantum metrology.

The methodology developed within the scope of this work provides a rigorous mathematical foundation for validating quantum standards of electrical quantities and opens new paths for the development of integrated complex quantum systems.
Original scientific publication

D. Reifert, M. Kokainis, A. Ambainis et al.: A random-walk benchmark for single-electron circuits. Nat Commun 12, 285 (2021), https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-20554-w

Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB)

Related Quantum Mechanics Articles from Brightsurf:

Theoreticians show which quantum systems are suitable for quantum simulations
A joint research group led by Prof. Jens Eisert of Freie Universit├Ąt Berlin and Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) has shown a way to simulate the quantum physical properties of complex solid state systems.

A new interpretation of quantum mechanics suggests reality does not depend on the measurer
For 100 years scientists have disagreed on how to interpret quantum mechanics.

New evidence for quantum fluctuations near a quantum critical point in a superconductor
A study has found evidence for quantum fluctuations near a quantum critical point in a superconductor.

Simulating quantum 'time travel' disproves butterfly effect in quantum realm
Using a quantum computer to simulate time travel, researchers have demonstrated that, in the quantum realm, there is no 'butterfly effect.' In the research, information--qubits, or quantum bits--'time travel' into the simulated past.

Orbital engineering of quantum confinement in high-Al-content AlGaN quantum well
Recently, professor Kang's group focus on the limitation of quantum confine band offset model, the hole states delocalization in high-Al-content AlGaN quantum well are understood in terms of orbital intercoupling.

A Metal-like Quantum Gas: A pathbreaking platform for quantum simulation
Coherent and ultrafast laser excitation creates an exotic matter phase with spatially overlapping electronic wave-functions under nanometric control in an artificial micro-crystal of ultracold atoms.

Fluid mechanics mystery solved
An environmental engineering professor has solved a decades-old mystery regarding the behavior of fluids, a field of study with widespread medical, industrial and environmental applications.

Quantum leap: Photon discovery is a major step toward at-scale quantum technologies
A team of physicists at the University of Bristol has developed the first integrated photon source with the potential to deliver large-scale quantum photonics.

USTC realizes the first quantum-entangling-measurements-enhanced quantum orienteering
Researchers enhanced the performance of quantum orienteering with entangling measurements via photonic quantum walks.

A convex-optimization-based quantum process tomography method for reconstructing quantum channels
Researchers from SJTU have developed a convex-optimization-based quantum process tomography method for reconstructing quantum channels, and have shown the validity to seawater channels and general channels, enabling a more precise and robust estimation of the elements of the process matrix with less demands on preliminary resources.

Read More: Quantum Mechanics News and Quantum Mechanics Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.