B2B Marketers » Reach Pre-Qualified IT Decision Makers with a Custom Lead Gen Program » Get Details
Welcome Guest | Sign In
Salesforce Commerce Solution Guide

Quantum Teleportation Leaps to New Distance Record

By Richard Adhikari
May 16, 2012 1:21 PM PT

Scientists in China have transmitted quantum bits, or qubits, over a record distance of 97 km, or roughly 60 miles.

Quantum Teleportation Leaps to New Distance Record

This is more than six times the distance of the previous record of 16 km, set by another team of Chinese researchers in May of 2010, as reported in Nature.com.

The results represent a step toward the establishment of a global quantum network, and the methods used in the experiment could be utilized for satellite-based quantum communications, the scientists said.

"This is just a transmission method, so it could have wide utility, though I expect the cost will initially make it best for huge data streams," Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group, told TechNewsWorld.

This technology "could end up changing much of the world" because it's both potentially higher bandwidth and lower latency, approaching zero, and these factors "could drive massive computer centralization on a world scale and force a massive shakeout of security, networking and computer companies," Enderle continued. "Something like this could turn us into a SaaS (Software as a Service) world."

The Theory Behind the Experiment

The latest experiment demonstrated quantum teleportation of an independent unknown state between two optical free-space links 97 km apart with multi-photon entanglement.

Quantum teleportation is a process for transmitting information using quantum physics to, in effect, encrypt the data transmitted. It's also known as entanglement-assisted teleportation.

In quantum teleportation experiments, beams of lights are used to encode qubits. The encoded beam of light, which is described as quantum entangled, is split into two and transmitted. When a qubit at one receiver is observed and take a defined form, the other half of the qubit at the other receiver takes the same defined form.

Quantum entanglement results when particles such as photons or electrons interact physically and then become separated but remain in the same quantum state. A quantum state is a set of mathematical variables, including position, momentum and spin, that fully describes a quantum system.

What the Researchers Did

The researchers used an ultra-bright entangled photon source based on Type-II spontaneous parametric down-conversion (SPDC). The SPDC process involves using a non-linear crystal to split photons into two. Those photons in a pair whose polarizations are perpendicular to one another are termed "Type II" photons.

In an SPDC apparatus, a strong laser beam, called the "pump" beam, is directed at a beta-barium borate (BBO) crystal. That's exactly what the researchers did. This generated the beam of light, which was split and sent across Lake Qinghai in China.

Salesforce Commerce Solution Guide
When using a search engine, how often do you look beyond the first page of results?
Never -- There's always enough information on the first page to meet my needs.
Rarely -- There's usually enough on the first page, but sometimes I want to see more.
Occasionally -- If there are too many paid-for results, or if I don't find an answer on the first page.
Often -- Even if there's enough information on the first page, I like to know what else is available.
Always -- First page search results are rigged; I don't want to be limited to what an algorithm highlights.
Salesforce Commerce Solution Guide
Salesforce Commerce Solution Guide