Scientists have obtained a new state of matter where time has 'two dimensions'
Article by: Andacs Robert Eugen, on 24 July 2022, at 08:42 am Los Angeles time
Creating an "extra" dimension in time could change the way we relate to matter and help build quantum computers that have the potential to change the world, scientists say.
The researchers applied laser beams, which pulse in a pattern inspired by the Fibonacci sequence, to the atoms inside a quantum computer. When they did so, they discovered the strange phase of matter. This has two dimensions but continues to flow in one direction.
This brings years of theoretical research into experimental reality, scientists say. The strange phase of matter could be essential for researchers trying to build reliable quantum computers. Such technology could change the world, enabling calculations that would have been virtually impossible until now.
In the new phase of matter, the stored information is much better protected against errors than in other systems currently used in quantum computers. This means that data can be stored for much longer, which in turn will make quantum computing much more likely.
Quantum computers are powered by quantum bits, which are like the bits in a computer. They are made of atomic ions and can be active, inactive, or a combination of the two states.
But interacting with these quantum bits can make any computer that relies on them so error-prone as to be useless. So scientists are faced with the challenge of finding a way to make these quantum bits more resilient and less prone to change.
One method was to apply laser beams to them, which adds "symmetries" - but in the new study, the scientists added not one, but two temporal symmetries, using laser pulses that came in order but didn't they repeat. And, now scientists have proven the theory to be correct in the real world.