We’re Close to a Universal Quantum Computer, Here’s Where We're At

what you're looking at is a hermetically sealed glass laboratory scientists here are engineering special chips that could power the next computing revolution a universal quantum computer chances are you've heard of quantum computers and that they're going to change everything function computers have the potential to completely change how we use technology of the future the computational power is off the charts what's about to happen with quantum computing is gonna make the past look incredibly slow quantum computers are new kinds of machines that promise an exponential growth spurt and processing power capable of tackling problems our computers today can't solve while an encryption busting global problem solving quantum computer doesn't exist just yet the field has gained some serious momentum we've reached a point where it's pretty clear that those performance numbers are good enough now you can build a real product a real piece of technology out of this idea and when that when that threshold got crossed people started to place their bets tech giants like IBM and Google and startups like Righetti computing are all in something of a scientific race to build the first universal quantum computer but to fully understand what makes a quantum computer so uniquely powerful you'll need to know a bit of quantum mechanics quantum mechanics is the field that describes the simplest things around us individual electrons or atoms or you know particles of light like photons and the fascinating thing is when you look at these very simple systems they don't really obey the same rules that that the world around us does we use sort of two very important properties of quantum mechanics one of them is superposition of states and the other one is entanglement when we talk about classical computing we often hear the word bit and bit can refer to zero and one you can also think of it as a binary state you have a switch give me on or can be off for instance when you're physically typing commands into your computer to write an email each letter you strike on the keyboard is translated to a unique string of zeros and ones that are being switched on and off to digitally represent your words but with superposition quantum computers can do things differently instead of using these big be zero or ones we use what's called qubits which are quantum bits I mean these bits instead of being a 0 or a 1 can either be sort of any combination of a 0 and a 1 this is something that sort of arises because of quantum mechanics it allows us to do sort of more tricks now there's a very special form of superposition known as entanglement which is even more interesting what you have is the ability to have two qubits in superposition States that essentially can only be understood with a collective element of both qubits in a quantum computer you can use that lingering interaction to do all sorts of really interesting types of calculations where different qubits have this kind of persisting ghostly connection with each other and if you flip this qubit around this one over here will feel it and if you do that in a controlled way you can move lots and lots of information around within your quantum mechanical system really efficiently but controlling qubits in constructing the right quantum architecture are today's major engineering challenges which is why quantum computers in the labs that house them today look like this it's right where computers were in the 50s or forties or where you had technicians plugging and unplugging things you know all over the place on some wall of electronics you want things when you're first building them to be really modular reconfigurable to build a quantum computer you need to start with the quantum chip and Righetti IBM and other tech companies are investing in something called superconducting qubits a superconducting qubit is just metal on a silicon chip and that metal on the silicon chip is arranged in such a way that when you cool it down to a low enough temperature that the metal becomes superconducting and that is all the electrons can flow without electrical resistance they can actually take on individual quantum states the neat thing about superconducting qubits is you can you can make them with just normal semiconductor processes we've finished making this way further six inches in size about this big there's typically anywhere between a few dozen to a few hundred chips and they get packaged into a circuit board that lets us make connections on to that chip when you're making circuits on silicon you have to have the environment be really free of dust and contaminants because we have very small features on these chips and a piece of dust can screw them up in order to cool them down you need an entire infrastructure of refrigeration and so for that we rely on what are known as dilution refrigerators these dilution refrigerators allow us to cool down the chips to around 10 to 15 million Kelvin the most noticeable sound you hear in our labs is the cryocoolers they work by pulsing helium gas into and out of this refrigerator system in such a way that's just continuously drawing heat out of the interior of the fridge besides the refrigerator there's an entire suite of hardware components and coaxial cables unten you ators microwave amplifiers circulators a whole bevy of components that are all need to function at low temperatures to enable our quantum processors in order to sort of control the qubits we have a lot of hardware that sends pulses and signals to the qubits we use this thing which we call a resonator which is sort of sensitive to the state of the qubit and is a way for us to kind of read and see the state of the qubit we like to say it's like a middleman and its state will change depending on the state of the qubit and we can sort of read it and talk to it more easily than we can talk to the qubit though the teams have different approaches there respectively finessing their techniques tweaking the intensity of microwave pulses in temperature manufacturing different kinds of quantum chips and testing new algorithms there's a lot of work to do because at this stage the amount of time at qubit can retain its quantumness it's still pretty short the single biggest challenge all the time is always how do you make these qubits last as long as possible coherence times is how long quantum information lasts inside of a qubit so if you put a qubit from the zero state to the one state and you just wait you know 100 microseconds 200 microseconds at some point that extra little bit of energy will decay out of the qubit all of the noise that we actually have in physical systems results in error rates that are still not quite good enough to perform these proven quantum algorithms in a head-to-head match between quantum computers and classical computers today laptops still dominate at least for now today's quantum computers aren't big enough or high-performing enough to actually do something better than a classical computer that's going to change pretty soon an example of this is it is basically impossible for a computer to anticipate what a molecule would do in the human body right this is something that the drug development industry has to spend billions of dollars figuring out by just guessing and checking nature doesn't store information in zeros and ones the operating system of nature is quantum mechanics if you want to simulate a quantum system you need something that can do it quantum mechanically and so that's the the kind of problem that a quantum computer can solve because quantum computers can analyze large quantities of data and spot patterns quickly they could tackle optimization problems for transportation and industry advanced climate modeling and boost artificial intelligence research one day but for those wondering when they'll be able to pick up a quantum laptop you won't have sort of a personal laptop that is a quantum computer a quantum computer will be a little bit more behind the scenes quantum computers are still in the experimental stage but their raw potential and imminent arrival are sure to cause a paradigm shift in computing physics and potentially your understanding of the world we live in today you're working on an extremely challenging and hard problem where every day you're thinking about really hard physics sort of debugging experiments working with Hardware writing a lot of code collaborating much like the development of classical computers where no one would have probably predicted where we are today with the technology that emerged from classical computers such as with our mobile phones laptops that it's really hard for us to even predict what are gonna be the offshoot technologies whereas quantum computing actually going to bring us into the future for more science documentaries check out this one right here don't forget to subscribe and keep coming back to seeker for more videos

28 thoughts on “We’re Close to a Universal Quantum Computer, Here’s Where We're At

  1. 30 years ago size of room computers
    20 bit smaller and commercially available
    10 laptop
    0 back at the size o a lab again like wtf

  2. No matter how much technology advances ,one greedy human will be always there to exploit its capabilities.

  3. "Quantum mechanics is something that describes most simple things around us." Yup students studying Quantum mechanics can feel it!😂😂😭😭 It is incredibly hard to understand!!😁😥

  4. Quantum entanglement is like a gambling puzzle to me .. somewhere in the future .. our future generation will depends on quantum decision .. either they live or die .. Will be that our future ??

  5. So basically ,The quantum projectile will enable the simulation of the predictions of the photons and superposition of space with different qubits so superconducting qubits will take individual quantum specs on microwave amplifiers and coherence time. I hope that was simple enough for you guys to understand! Lmfao Bahahah

  6. arent quantum computers something only for scientists and research? I dont understand how it would benefit me a 14yo girl

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