Wednesday, January 28, 2009

One Meter Teleportation Using Charged Ions

I just read an article in Scientific American that describes how Steven Olmschenk and co-authors (Science article) are able to transfer a qubit (quantum bit) from one Ytterbium ion to another that are sitting one meter apart. This is the first demonstration of long-range teleportation between two ions. The Scientific American article goes on to describe why teleportation is an essential ingredient in quantum repeaters and how they can be used to transfer data in quantum processors.
Point to note: Teleportation is not faster-than-light communication. Alice the initiator of the teleportation protocol, and the one who is sending quantum information to Bob needs to send classical information on a classical communication channel essentially telling him which measurement operation to perform in order to correctly acquire her quantum information. Classically we can't communicate faster than the speed of light. Hence the limitation.

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