Move Aside, Bit. It’s Qubit’s Time to Shine

Move Aside, Bit.
It’s Qubit’s Time to Shine

By Casey Moffitt

The qubit is rightfully claiming its stake in twenty-first century computing. Much like the bit that comprises the binary language of standard computers, the qubit is the basic unit of communication of quantum computers. John Zasadzinski, Paul and Suzi Schutt Endowed Chair and Illinois Institute of Technology professor of physics, and new faculty member Rakshya Khatiwada, assistant professor of physics, are representing the university in a partnership with Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory on a $575 million multi-institution initiative to develop a quantum computer that is millions of times more powerful than today’s supercomputers. Zasadzinski is exploring the use of superconducting tunneling spectroscopy to help determine sources of decoherence—a process in which the environment interacts with the qubits—and how to mitigate the problem. Khatiwada, who is also a Fermilab associate scientist, is investigating and fabricating novel quantum sensors and devices that will be controlled through highly multiplexed readout electronics.