Experts are closer than ever to creating a sophisticated and highly secure quantum internet. Scientists have now been able to transmit quantum information over 27 miles (44 km).
Data accuracy (data accuracy) and transmission distance are two essential components of building a working quantum internet – which is the cornerstone of a next-generation communications infrastructure.
The team confirmed that it achieved an accuracy level above 90% with its quantitative information.
Dr Panagiotis Spentzores, a physicist from the California Institute of Technology’s Fermilab Particle and Accelerator Physics Laboratory, said he was happy with the success of the tests.
“This is a major achievement on the road to building technology that will redefine how global communication is conducted,” he said.
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Quantum internet technology uses strange, unmeasured particles suspended in a mix of possible states, like spinning dice that have not yet settled.
Although rolling dice are theoretically capable of settling on any number, they are guaranteed to make a total, regardless of the distance between them.
It is therefore understood that data on one site immediately reflects this in another location, regardless of distance.
Once introduced to one another, the qubits’ identities are “interwoven” in ways that are only understood once measured.
Innovative arrangements intertwining three qubits can force the state of one particle to adopt the potential of another through its mutually entangled partner.
In the quantum universe, this is analogous to the transformation of one particle into another, which means that the identity travels almost instantaneously over a distance.
However, this entanglement still needs to be identified first, before preserving it as qubits are sent to their final destination via optical fibers or even satellites orbiting.
And the peculiar nature of quantum information makes it extremely difficult to transport entangled photons over long distances without interference.
Longer optical fibers mean an increased opportunity for noise to interfere with entanglements.
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The latest experiment saw 44 kilometers of fibers directed per arm, setting a new record for irradiating entangled qubits to successfully transmit quantum data.
But despite the fact that this has not been proven before that it works with precision across such distances, experts estimate years of work still lie ahead before commercial applications can materialize.
“With this demonstration, we’re starting to lay the groundwork for building an urban quantum network in the Chicago area,” said Dr. Spentzores.
Quantum entanglement and data transmission are extremely complex, and many experts do not fully understand how science can be harnessed to create a quantum network.
Some suggest that the technology promises nearly unimaginable increases in both speed and computational power.
The quantum internet can also be very secure, which means that hacking attempts will simply destroy the lock that is being picked up.
For now, though, experts predict that quantum internet networks will function primarily as specialized extensions to the current incarnation of the Internet.
What makes this study special is the accuracy and distance between quantum entanglement teleportation – and equipment used in public spaces – which means that it is relatively easy to scale this technology with devices already in place.
Professor Maria Spiropolo, Fellow in Physics at the California Institute of Technology, said: “We are very proud to have achieved this milestone in sustainable, high-performance and scalable teleportation systems.
“Results will be further improved with the system upgrades we expect to complete by the second quarter of 2021.”