When you hear the word “quantum,” does your mind jump immediately to science fiction? Well, our everyday reality is quickly catching up to what was make-believe! Quantum information science studies matter and energy at the most basic level. Researchers in the field aim to uncover the properties and behaviors of the very building blocks of nature.
Quantum information science (QIS) is an emerging field that spans computation, communication, precision measurement, and fundamental quantum mechanics. Quantum discoveries have been incorporated into our foundational understanding of materials, chemistry, biology, and astronomy. QIS is viewed through three main areas:
- Quantum Computing
- Quantum Communication
- Quantum Sensing
Your computer or phone wouldn’t be all that useful if it couldn’t communicate with other devices or if that communication wasn’t secure. The same goes for future quantum devices! By connecting many quantum computers and sensors together–similar to how “the cloud” connects our devices now–they will become all the more powerful and useful.
But connecting quantum devices is easier said than done. This is because, unlike the information we send today over cables and airwaves, the quantum information (qubits) we need to send between quantum devices is super-fragile. If the qubits interact with anything along the way to their destination they can be altered. Even the metal that makes up a regular electrical cable will change the state of a qubit as it travels down the wire. This means that we have to develop new ways to transmit and receive quantum information. It also means we can tell if someone is listening to our quantum communications because any eavesdropper will alter our qubits!
Curious to learn more about how quantum communication works? Join C2ST and our expert to learn more!
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