An Approach to Bridging Atom Optics and Bulk Spin Quantum Computation

Murali, K. "An Approach to Bridging Atom Optics and Bulk Spin Quantum Computation"


This thesis is an exploration in quantum computation and modern physics. Atomic, molecular, and optical (AMO) physics, a centerpiece of modern physics, originated in the 1950's with the discovery of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), a field which has mostly been left behind in physics. However, NMR has recently taken yet another leap: quantum computers of up to seven qubits in size, the largest realized to-date, have been implemented by applying NMR to molecules in liquid solution. What new lessons can AMO physics learn from these advances made by NMR into quantum computation? And what can NMR quantum computation learn from the many advances made in recent AMO physics? In this work, I study two specific answers to these twin questions: the use of atom-like quantum systems beyond spin-1/2 for NMR quantum computation, and the demonstration of a modern quantum-optical phenomenon, electromagnetically induced transparency, using NMR quantum computation. Both examples build on theoretical analysis, and include experimental results, showing how atomic physics could be very useful for implementing certain quantum operations and vice versa. These investigations form the basis for an atomic physics test-bed in NMR quantum computation.