Carbon qubit starts to sparkle

The Conductive Atomic Force Microscope used by Archer following a year of development with ANFF experts. Credit: USyd


Archer Materials Limited has demonstrated conductivity in its prototype qubit component, a significant milestone in the ASX-listed company’s pursuit of developing quantum computing technologies.

Archer has been working with ANFF’s micro and nanofabrication experts at the University of Sydney for over a year as they develop their carbon-based qubits. This type of qubit has shown promise that it could form the backbone of a quantum computer that operates at room temperature.

This most recent development involved preparing and analysing the conductivity of the prototype with nanometre precision. Dr Martin Fuechsle, Archer’s Manager of Quantum Technology, worked with specialist technical staff based at the University of Sydney’s Research and Prototype Foundry (RPF) to prepare the sample and then perform the conductance analysis.

The preparatory steps involved depositing the carbon nanospheres that form the heart of Archer’s qubit technology onto a custom-built testbed using electron-beam induced deposition (EBID) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) capabilities. Measurements were then made using a conductive Atomic Force Microscope (AFM), which demonstrated the samples ability to carry electricity.

This is a major development for Archer’s qubit technology – according to the company’s CEO, Dr Mohammad Choucair, “The room-temperature conductivity potentially enables direct access to the quantum information stored in the qubits by means of electrical current signals on-board portable devices, which require conducting materials to operate, for both control and readout.”

On the back of this achievement, Dr Martin Fuechsle explained that the company can now continue along its technical development roadmap towards a working qubit prototype. He said: “As part of this developmental process, we will continue to use the RPF facilities at USyd, as well as lab facilities at collaborating institutes, such as UNSW in Sydney and EPFL in Switzerland. Our next experimental efforts will focus on controlling the electron spin state on individual qubit components using single carbon nanospheres.”

Read the full press release here.

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