Assistant Professor Shuolong Yang and his group at the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering (PME) are finding inspiration for quantum computing from the unlikeliest of places—the ancient art of woodblock printing.
Quantum computers could have the ability to process complex calculations and run simulations not possible on classical systems, but scientists and engineers are still working to solve decoherence—a phenomenon where environmental interference, such as light and vibration, corrupts sensitive quantum information.
One potential solution is to create quantum computers from topological materials, which resist decoherence through their unique molecular and electronic structures.
But these materials remain difficult to engineer and process at the nanoscale. To find a better process that could ultimately be scaled up, Yang and his group at the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering (PME) hope to prove their new technique works—and ultimately help usher in a new age of quantum manufacturing. Their work is funded by a new grant from the National Science Foundation.
“This project could bridge the gap between new quantum materials and using those materials in future quantum technology,” Yang said.
The material Yang will develop is iron selenium tellurium, a topological superconductor, which has the potential to carry quantum information while remaining immune to errors. To make it, Yang and his team propose a new process inspired by block printing—an artmaking technique in which ink is applied to the surface of a carved woodblock, then applied to paper to make a print.