Quantum information processing based on cavity QED with mesoscopic systems
- Introduction: Recent developments in quantum communication and computing [1-3] stimulated an intensive search for physical systems that can be used for coherent processing of quantum information. It is generally believed that quantum entanglement of distinguishable quantum bits (qubits) is at the heart of quantum information processing. Significant efforts have been directed towards the design of elementary logic gates, which perform certain unitary processes on pairs of qubits. These gates must be capable of generating specific, in general entangled, superpositions of the two qubits and thus require a strong qubit-qubit interaction. Using a sequence of single and two-bit operations, an arbitrary quantum computation can be performed . Over the past few years many systems have been identified for potential implementations of logic gates and several interesting experiments have been performed. Proposals for strong qubit-qubit interaction involve e.g. the vibrational coupling of cooled trapped ions , near dipole-dipole or spin-spin interactions such as in nuclear magnetic resonance , collisional interactions of confined cooled atoms  or radiative interactions between atoms in cavity QED . The possibility of simple preparation and measurement of qubit states as well as their relative insensitivity to a thermal environment makes the latter schemes particularly interesting for quantum information processing. Most theoretical proposals on cavity-QED systems focus on fundamental systems involving a small number of atoms and few photons. These systems are sufficiently simple to allow for a first-principle description. Their experimental implementation is however quite challenging. For example, extremely high-Q micro-cavities are needed to preserve coherence during all atom-photon interactions. Furthermore, single atoms have to be confined inside the cavities for a sufficiently long time. This requires developments of novel cooling and trapping techniques, which is in itself a fascinating direction of current research. Despite these technical obstacles, a remarkable progress has been made in this area: quantum processors consisting of several coupled qubits now appear to be feasible.