Quantum Computing: Exploring the Future of Computing
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Introduction - Quantum Computing Fundamentals
As modern civilization is continuously developing, there is a need to discover new paths or ways for the purpose of exploiting physical quantities like energies, forces as well as materials. Idea of a computing machine was started from early thinking of famous Charles Babbage, who discovered world’s first mechanical computer. Babbage’s machine was not typically a computer, which is seen today, but a difference engine used for calculating mathematical problems of polynomial functions.Charles Babbage was credited as the father of the computer. Technological development in the field of computer science and technology can be seen as the culmination of technological advancements year after year. After the discovery of Integrated Circuit (IC) technology, computers are continuously growing smaller and smaller despite of high computational capabilities. Although computers of modern times are very advanced, but the basic working principle remains the same. All the instructions given by user is converted into binary bits i.e., 0 or 1 for the computational purpose. As all computers have to use binary bits, they possess computational limitations. To overcome limitations scientists of various organizations like Google, IBM, Intel as well as Apple tends to use Quantum Mechanical principles to built new type of computing machine. In recent time Google claimed that they have achieve quantum supremacy by creating quantum processor named Sycamore. IBM also developed their first quantum computing machine. These two discoveries open new frontier in science and computing. In this report the learner wants to investigate various blocks of quantum computing.
Literature review
Quantum computers use various phenomena related to quantum mechanics to achieve more computational supremacy than their conventional counterparts.Conventional computers use binary number concept or hexadecimal numbers for all computational purposes (Boyeret al., 2017). As per Boolean algebra binary numbers are represented as 0 or 1, i.e., absolute truth or absolute false. Users give their instructions in conventional languages like English, French etc, which cannot be interpreted by computers. Computers convert these languages into machine languages consisting of a set of binary or hexadecimal numbers for executing the instructions (Debnathet al., 2016). As binary or hexadecimal numbers provide to possibility, therefore computers execute instructions by keeping two possible situations in their mind. Quantum computers differs in this aspect. In the realm of Quantum Mechanics no distinct possibilities are present. It employs a set of possible probabilities for computational purpose, which further gives them superiority than their modern counterparts (Dumitrescuet al., 2018).They use concepts of qubit or quantum bits which is equivalent as bits in conventional computers.
The root of quantum computing lied in the year of 1960, when conjugate coding was developed by Stephen Wiesner. Concept of qubit first saw daylight after Alexander Holevo published a paper, which showed that more information can be carried by using n number of qubits than n number of conventional bits. This is known as the Holevo’s Theorem (Figgattet al., 2017). In the year of 1976, Polish physicist as well as mathematician, Roman Stanislaw proved that classical Shannon Capacity Theorem cannot be successfully applied in case of information carrying qubits (Gambettaet al., 2017). He also gave a proposed model of qubit information theory, which is more generalized form of Shannon’s Information theory, i.e, Shannon’s theorem can be derived from qubit information theory whereas vice versa is not possible. World’s first model regarding quantum computing was given by Paul Benioff, where he showed that Turing machines can be operated if laws of Quantum Mechanics like Schrodinger equations is applied on them. This paper laid the main foundation stone on quantum computing research. Toffoli gates were invented by Tommaso Toffoli. These gates are analogous to conventional Boolean logic gates. In this decade research of quantum computing was at its peak.
First universal model of quantum computer was given by David Deutsch (Guoet al., 2019). Any simulation regarding quantum computing can be easily done by using this aforesaid computer. World’s first realization of physical quantum computer was proposed by Yoshihisa Yamamoto in 1988. It can realize famous CNOT gate of Richard Feynman (Hadzihasanovicet al., 2018). Fredkin gate was also realized using quantum mechanics principles by scientist Gerard J. Milburn in 1988. In 90’s various researches on quantum computing realization was done. Even an oracle program was written to run a quantum computer. But there is no physical quantum computer or processor is present until Google as well as IBM’s discovery was made. In 2019, Google claimed that, they made world’s first QuantumProcessor named Sycamore, which can execute a task in only 200 seconds, which can be accomplished by using modern conventional computers in 10,000 year (Harvey., 2019). They ran simulation regarding quantum computing in a supercomputer named Summit for conducting the aforesaid test. Summit is the most powerful supercomputer present now. After publishing this test result in famous science journal Nature, Google claimed that they have achieved supremacy in quantum computing field. This a 54 qubit processor as per Google’s information. Later, IBM started their famous program named IBM Q Experience, which gives access to their quantum computing processors to public for the purpose of further development. Researchers and companies like Google, IBM, Apple as well as institutions like MIT are constantly developing quantum computing to get out of the prototypes and to construct commercial quantum computers.According to various literatures, quantum computers are more fast as well as secure in terms of security. They are nearly impossible to breach by contemporary hacking technologies present. The state of flow of possibilities rather than distinct possibility, gives extra advantage to them. It can be further illustrated by the adjacent example. It is known to all that in modern communication, information is sent either in form of stream of binary bits ( a sequence of 0 and 1’s) or as light ( in case of optical fibers using Wavelength Division Multiplexing or WDM technology) . Information can be hacked from the channel carrying information or the receiver itself. But in case of qubits or quantum bits, this scenario differs completely (Linkeet al., 2017). As information are in the quantum state therefore, they are not like sequence of 0 and 1’s but they are like stream of probabilities of 0 and 1’s. So, from this state of probabilities, source information can be recovered without any legitimate private key. Now if hacker tries to measure the aforesaid quantum state, then whole system of receiver will shut down. Even if this quantum state of receiving station can be hacked, from these states original states of information cannot be recovered. Some researchers also said that there are no stand procedures present to standardize the information carried by qubits. Enormous research is needed in this purpose.
Previous studies also showed various strengths as well as vulnerabilities of quantum computing than its conventional counterparts, which are the following:
In the conventional computing, information is stored in the form of binary data i.e., 0 and 1. Quantum computing use qubits for storage of information. Qubit actually not distinct like binary counterparts. They can be understood as flow of possibilities of 0 as well as 1’s (Pantet al., 2019).
In conventional computing, there is a possibility of copy the desired information before sending it through channel. But in case of quantum computing it is impossible. Quantum computing never allows to perform sending as well as distribution of data simultaneously (Romeroet al., 2018).
Direction of information flow in conventional computing method is unidirectional i.e., information can be sent by sender to receiver through communication channel but reverse procedure cannot be done. Quantum computing is more advanced in this context. Quantum computing allows users to send it to the receiver or to receive by sender itself. It can be said that quantum computing is analogous to full duplex communication.
Noise is nothing but an unwanted electrical signal. For the purpose of effective communication it is very necessary to main noise in a certain limit with respect to the original information signal. For this purpose Signal-to-Noise ratio is measured. Information which are sent by conventional methods are very much prone to noise, whereas quantum computing methods creates a channel immune to noise for information transmission.
It can be found from previous studies that although quantum computers are not present in reality, there are several fields of their applications, which are the following:
To make secure aero planes, quantum computing can be used. There are many complex calculations are needed to understand data of jet simulation software completely. It is a very challenging task for conventional computers, whereas quantum counterparts will resolve easily (Rudolph., 2017).
Another important application of quantum computing method lies in discovery of distant stars and planets in less time period. Astronomical calculations are very complex in nature. Quantum computers with their huge analytical and aggregating power can solve complex mathematical calculations in a flash of time. .
Modern banking system can be more secure by using quantum cryptography. As there is no distinct states present in quantum computing, therefore it is nearly impossible for the hackers to breach password from the channel as well as devices (Saffman., 2016).
Discovery new drugs and detection of new unknown diseases require numerous mathematical calculations in a small period of time. This purpose can be solved better by quantum computers than conventional ones. From previous literatures it can be found that by using quantum simulations, chance of detection of critical diseases like cancer can be increased. If cancer of patients is detected earlier, then mortality rate will dramatically reduce.
Quantum computing can also increase Gross Domestic Product or GDP of a country. If various data collected from individuals is analyzed by quantum computers, then spending behavior of customer can be improved rapidly. This further create country’s economic and GDP growth (Wanget al., 2016).
Various gaps in the literature
Though several literatures indicate about the enormous advantages of quantum computers research, but there are some gaps are present, which are the following:
Although quantum devices were made but all of them are in prototype stage. Therefore no excusive manufacturing technology present to build quantum computers of macroscopic structure. No research was conducted on this aspect.
It was known to all that it is nearly impossible to simulate large quantum computers using conventional technology. The existing systems can contain only 100 number of qubits or quantum bits. These systems are too small to incorporate quantum simulation systems for various research and industrial purposes. Even if classical methods are applied then behavior of quantum systems cannot be understood properly.
Although organizations like Google made quantum processor to achieve quantum supremacy, these processors are all in prototype stage. To make this prototypes in real quantum form is very challenging as engineers face several engineering problems like designing, realization as well as testing (Watsonet al., 2018).
Conclusion:
It can be concluded that Quantum computers are enormously efficient than their traditional or conventional counterparts. They perform huge tasks in 200 seconds, whereas to execute same task in normal computer requires 10,000 years of computation. Therefore it can be easily understood that it can change this world forever. It can be used in several fields of science as well as engineering like medicine, cryptography as well security systems. Modern banking system can be more secure by using quantum cryptography. As there is no distinct states present in quantum computing, therefore it is nearly impossible for the hackers to breach password from the channel as well as devices. Discovery new drugs and detection of new unknown diseases require numerous mathematical calculations in a small period of time. This purpose can be solved better by quantum computers than conventional ones.For this purpose, researchers as well as organizations are constantly developing quantum computing to get out of the prototypes and to construct commercial quantum computers.
References:
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Debnath, S., Linke, N.M., Figgatt, C., Landsman, K.A., Wright, K. and Monroe, C., 2016. Demonstration of a small programmable quantum computer with atomic qubits. Nature, 536(7614), pp.63-66.
Figgatt, C., Maslov, D., Landsman, K.A., Linke, N.M., Debnath, S. and Monroe, C., 2017. Complete 3-qubit grover search on a programmable quantum computer. Nature communications, 8(1), pp.1-9.
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Hadzihasanovic, A., Ng, K.F. and Wang, Q., 2018, July. Two complete axiomatisations of pure-state qubit quantum computing. In Proceedings of the 33rd Annual ACM/IEEE Symposium on Logic in Computer Science (pp. 502-511).
Harvey, S.P., 2019. Developing Singlet-Triplet Qubits in Gallium Arsenide as a Platform for Quantum Computing (Doctoral dissertation).
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