The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) has been researching a new type of molecular based qubit called a quantum functional group. This consists of molecular fragments which which can be attached to molecules or surfaces to form qubits. To help further this research, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded UCLA $1.8 million over a three year period to establish the Center for Advanced Molecular Architectures for Quantum Information Science to further study and refine this technology. The research team is currently using calcium-oxygen structures to create these quantum functional groups. But as part of the research they will investigate other structures and also look for ways to increase the stability and scalability of the qubits. Because these qubits are fabricated through chemical means, the team believes that their qubits may be easier to scale than other qubit technology which must rely on electronic or optical means for fabrication and control. To our knowledge, UCLA is the only organization researching this new type of qubit so it will be interesting to see what progress they will make with it. For additional information about the grant from the NSF and the technology, you can view press releases posted on the UCLA website here and here as well as a technical paper published in Nature Chemistry that describes the technology in more detail that can be accessed here.
August 27, 2022