Quantum Computing and Quantum Networking – New Physics for Information Technology


Professor Hendrik Bluhm, Chair of Quantum Technology at RWTH Aachen

The Lecture

The laws of quantum mechanics, originally discovered in an effort to understand the microscopic structure of matter,
include a number of counterintuitive concepts that have no parallel in classical physics. Quantum systems can be in
several states at the same time, and exhibit correlations that would be forbidden by any “reasonable” classical theory.

Leveraging these properties for information processing would be a fundamental paradigm change that could enable an exponential speedup for certain computational problems and physically secured communication, for example. Over the last two decades, we have learned to reveal such quantum behavior not only in atoms, but also fabricated solid state devices. These can serve as quantum bits or qubits, the elementary building blocks of quantum information processors. Systems with a handful of qubits have been realized and are approaching the performance metrics required for large scale applications. However, a tremendous challenge ahead is to scale up to practically useful systems with millions of qubits. One promising pathway that we are exploring locally is to use semiconductor nanostructures capturing individual electron spins to physically represent quantum bits.

  Professor Hendrik Bluhm Copyright: © Krupp Stiftung

The Speaker

Hendrik Bluhm, born in 1979, studied physics at the University of Freiburg and at Stanford University from where he received his PhD in 2008. From 2008 to 2011 he worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Physics at Harvard University. In March 2011 he joined the II. Institute of Physics of RWTH Aachen University now leading the Quantum Technology Group. He is one of the directors of the recently founded JARA-Institute for Quantum Information.

In 2011 Hendrik Bluhm has been awarded the Alfred Krupp-Förderpreis. In 2015 he received an ERC Starting Grant to investigate semiconductor-based quantum networks. His research focus is on the investigation and development of semiconductor spinqubits.

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