Researchers at the IBS Center for Quantum Nanoscience (QNS) in Seoul, South Korea, have successfully demonstrated using a scanning tunneling microscope (STM) to perform quantum computation using electrons as qubits, a press release said.

Quantum computing is usually associated with terms such as atom traps or superconductors that aid in isolating quantum states or qubits that serve as a basic unit of information. In many ways, everything in nature is quantum and can be used to perform quantum computations as long as we can isolate its quantum states.

The researchers at QNS used this principle to work with electrons as qubits. The spin of electrons can be compared to classical computing bits, where the direction of the reel, either up or down, can be considered as 0 or 1. Before it is measured, the electron can be in intermediate states, also known as superpositions, in quantum computing parlance. This makes them naturally occurring qubits, which can be measured with advances made in microscopy.

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