December 16, 2020 – A viable quantum internet – a network where information stored in qubits is shared over long distances through engagement – would transform data storage areas, precision sensing and computing, using in new communication times.
This month, scientists at Fermilab, the national laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy Science Office, and their partners took a major step in quantum web guidance.
In a paper published in PRX Quantum, the team demonstrates for the first time a demonstration of stable, long-distance (44 kilometers of fiber) teleportation of qubits of photons (quanta of light) with a magnitude greater than 90 %. The qubits were teleported over a fiber-optic network using state-of-the-art single-photon detectors and off-the-shelf equipment.
“We are very pleased with these results,” said Fermilab scientist Panagiotis Spentzouris, head of the Fermilab quantum science program and one of the paper’s co-authors. “This is a key achievement on the path to building a technology that will redefine how we communicate globally.”
Quantum teleportation is the “inseparable” movement of quantum states from one place to another. Qubit quantum teleportation is accomplished by engaging a quantum, in which two or more grains are closely linked. If a pair of connected grains is split between two different locations, regardless of the distance between them, the encoded information is teleported.
The joint team – researchers at Fermilab, AT&T, Caltech, Harvard University, NASA Jet Devolution Laboratory and the University of Calgary – successfully qubits on two systems: the Quantum Caltech Network, or CQNET, and the Fermilab Quantum Network, or FQNET. The systems were designed, built, commissioned and deployed by Caltech’s public-private research program on Intelligent Quantum Networks and Technologies, or IN-Q-NET.
“We are extremely proud to have achieved this milestone on stable, high-performance and scalable quantum teleportation systems,” said Maria Spiropulu, professor of physics at Caltech’s Shang-Yi Ch’en and program director IN-Q-NET research. “Outcomes will be further enhanced by systems upgrades that we expect to complete by Q2 2021.”
CQNET and FQNET, which feature near-autonomous data processing, are compatible both with the existing telecommunications infrastructure and with quantum processing and storage devices that emerge. Researchers are using them to improve the fidelity and rate of circulation, with an emphasis on complex quantum communication protocols and basic science.
The achievement comes just months after the U.S. Department of Energy announced its plan for a national quantum internet at a press conference in Chicago.
“With this exhibition we are beginning to lay the foundation for building the Chicago area metropolitan quantum network,” Spentzouris said. The Chicagoland network, known as the Illinois Express Quantum Network, is being designed by Fermilab in collaboration with Argonne National Laboratory, Caltech, Northwestern University and industry partners.
This research was supported by the DOE Office of Science through the Quantum Information Science-Enabled Discovery (QuantISED) program.
“The feat is a testament to the success of collaborations across disciplines and institutions, which guide our achievements in science,” said Fermilab Deputy Director of Research Joe Lykken. “I commend the IN-Q-NET team and our partners in academia and industry on this first-class achievement in quantum teleportation.”
Learn more about the result.
Fermilab is one of the leading national laboratories in America for particle physics and acceleration analysis. The U.S. Department of Energy Science Office lab, Fermilab is located near Chicago, Illinois, and is operated under contract with Fermi Research Alliance LLC, a partnership between the University of Chicago and the Universities Research Association, Inc. Visit the Fermilab website at www .fnal.gov.
The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of fundamental research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most important challenges of our time. For more information, visit science.energy.gov.