Science 2 min read

Breakthrough Quantum Material Discovered

For areas of study such as quantum computing to progress, a quantum material is needed that can handle the harsh requirements of the field. Now, researchers may have found such a material.

Reasearchers may have just found a quantum material that could lead to a breakthrough in quantum computing. | Image By GiroScience | Shutterstock

Reasearchers may have just found a quantum material that could lead to a breakthrough in quantum computing. | Image By GiroScience | Shutterstock

Materials scientists discovered a new quantum material that exhibits multiple properties usually not found in a single material.

Physicists, materials scientists, and engineers have been working for years on quantum materials to understand their characteristics and apply them to future computing solutions.

Understanding how quantum materials work and how to synthesize them and control their properties is of major importance for the development of quantum computing.

Quantum materials come in different compositions that induce certain properties.

Graphene, superconductors, topological insulators, and semimetals are all quantum materials with their own properties.

Read More: Photonic Quantum Computing may be Closer Than Previously Thought

Single Material, Multiple Quantum Properties

Now, however, scientists have validated the existence of multiple quantum phases in a single topological metal that they have discovered.

Madhab Neupane is an assistant professor of physics at the University of Central Florida’s Department of Physics.

Dr. Neupane and his research group discovered a quantum material called Hf2Te2P, a metallic material made of hafnium, tellurium, and phosphorus.

Researchers described Hf2Te2P as “the first material that has multiple quantum properties, meaning there is more than one electron pattern that develops within the electronic structure, giving it a range of quantum properties.”

The Neupane team used an advanced technique called ARPES (Angle-Resolved Photoemission Spectroscopy) to take specific measurements and investigate the properties of this compound material.

“Our discovery takes us one step closer to the application of quantum materials and helps us gain a deeper understanding of the interactions between various quantum phases,” says Neupane.

Dr. Neupane seems to be having high hopes for their newly-discovered material that he dubs “the silicon of a new era”, which would provide a foundation for the development of a new model for quantum computing.

Authors of the study, Distinct multiple fermionic states in a single topological metal, believe this material exhibiting multiple quantum phases will pave the way to the discovery of quantum materials that allow high-temperature surface superconductivity.

Having a single material with quantum versatility will spare scientists from having to efficiently combine different materials into a system and ensuring their respective properties are all at play in a simultaneous and a harmonious way.

Will we be hearing more of multiple-property quantum materials, or whatever they end up calling them, as a quantum research niche?

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Zayan Guedim

Trilingual poet, investigative journalist, and novelist. Zed loves tackling the big existential questions and all-things quantum.

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