Physicists from the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) used a mechanical oscillator to produce entangled radiation. According to the research team, this is the first time a mechanical object has been used to create entangled radiation. Beyond its significance for fundamental physics, such a device could be used to link sensitive quantum computers with the optical fibers that connect computer networks.
Classical computers are typically connected through optical fibers, because optical radiation is robust against disturbances that could corrupt or destroy data. In order to apply this technology to quantum computers, a link that can convert the quantum computer’s microwave photons to optical information carriers, or a device that generates entangled microwave-optical fields as a resource for quantum teleportation, would be required. Such a link or device could serve as a bridge between the room- temperature optical and the cryogenic quantum world. “What we have built is a prototype for a quantum link,” researcher Shabir Barzanjeh said.