Diamond-based quantum hardware for scalable quantum processors

04/23/2021 - Start of the joint project “QC-4-BW” within the Competence Center Quantum Computing Baden-Württemberg

At the core of quantum computers are so-called qubits—freely manipulable two-state quantum systems that have the potential to solve computational tasks where classical bit-based computers are doomed to fail. Although there are several approaches to realize such qubits today, so far only superconducting qubits are used in quantum computers. An alternative could be spin-based systems, such as “color centers” in high-purity diamond, a research field in which Fraunhofer IAF has many years of experience. This is the starting point of the joint project "QC-4-BW", which has been launched with the aim to develop one of the first functional diamond-based quantum processors.

Schmatische Darstellung NV-Magnetfelder Fraunhofer IAF
© Fraunhofer IAF

In April, the kick-off for the project “QC-4-BW - Development and benchmarking of a diamond-based spintronic quantum register for a scalable quantum processor” coordinated by the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Solid State Physics IAF took place. It is one of the first collaborative projects started in the course of the Competence Center Quantum Computing Baden-Württemberg. The aim of the project is the development and benchmarking of a miniaturized and scalable quantum processor based on optically coupled quantum registers, where each quantum register is formed by 10 nuclear spin-based qubits and one electron spin.

The core of the project is the development of a diamond-based, spintronic quantum register for a scalable quantum processor. For this purpose, a 10-qubit quantum register is being developed, which is the only register realized so far that also has an integrated quantum memory. In addition, the technological approach pursued also has the advantage of not having to be cooled to extremely low temperatures, as is the case with superconducting qubit systems. This not only facilitates the ongoing operation of diamond-based qubit hardware, but also the construction of quantum computer architectures and their connection to necessary readout and control electronics.

To test the performance of the technologies being developed in the project, the infrastructure of the Competence Center Quantum Computing Baden-Württemberg will be used. The developed quantum registers, the qubit topologies as well as the one- and two-qubit quantum gates will be compared with the corresponding components of the IBM quantum computer “Q System One”, which has been set up in Ehningen since the beginning of the year and whose operation is coordinated by Fraunhofer IAF and Fraunhofer IAO.

Further Information

Project “QC-4-BW”

More information about the project and the partners involved can be found here:

Projects of the Competence Center Quantum Computing BW

Here you will find an overview of current projects:

Quantum Technologies at Fraunhofer IAF

An overview of Fraunhofer IAF's research in the field of quantum technologies is available here: