iamond 'wires' – quantum computing's best friend
* 12:18 23 December 2008 by Jeff Hecht
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Using diamond to make micro circuits that channel light, not electricity, could help realise the elusive promise of quantum computing.
The allure of quantum computing is that it is able to solve problems which are near-impossible for conventional computers to crack, such as breaking very long cryptography keys.
Quantum computers hold "qubits" of information stored in the quantum properties of a system, for example, a single photon or a cloud of gas atoms in a gas. Diamond can be used to generate single photons and create qubits by writing information into their quantum states.
What's more, diamond can shield the photons from external influences, preventing unwanted modification of the stored data. And unlike other qubit techologies, which require supercooling, diamond operates fine at room temperature.
"All the essential elements for a quantum computer have been demonstrated in diamond," says Steven Prawer of the University of Melbourne, Australia