The study of quantum science, particularly quantum information science, is an area of research that has seen a rapid increase in activity since the beginning of the 21st century. The field of investigation promises enormous advancements in technology that may have a profound effect on the way we perform the future operations of computing and communications. By exploiting the principles of quantum mechanics scientists are studying the behavior of qubits, quantum bits of information, as they are subjected to different physical conditions. Instrumentation such as arbitrary waveform generators (AWGs) and digitizers play a crucial part in process. AWGs allow the generation of an almost unlimited range of waveforms that can be used to produce electromagnetic signals in the radio-wave range that in turn stimulate or resonate the materials being studied. While digitizers allow the capture and rapid analysis of resulting signals that reveal the qubit behavior.
Spectrum Instrumentation's AWGs offer multi-channel waveform generation with output rates up to 1.25 GS/s and 16 bit resolution. The multi-channel design makes it possible to scale up systems to study multiple qubits simultaneously, while the fast output rate allows complex signals, up to 400 MHz in frequency, to be easily generated. For applications requiring even higher frequencies the signals can also be passed through upconverters, potentially extending the frequency range up to tens of GHz.
With their very high resolution and synchronous output capability the AWGs are perfect for producing the required stimulus signals. They also include a host of replay and trigger modes to make it possible to output an almost unlimited variety of waveshapes. Fully programmable, the AWGs can be quickly reconfigured and, thanks to their large on-board memories, can even output sequences of waveshapes while new stimulus signals are being loaded!
While AWGs play a crucial role in creating the waveforms necessary to study qubits, digitizers also play a key part in determining how the qubits react under the various test conditions. Spectrum Instrumentation offers a wide variety of multi-channel digitizers that have sampling rates up to 5 GS/s, bandwidth over 1.5 GHz and vertical resolutions from 8 to 16 bit. To extend the useful signal frequency range that the digitizers can cover they can also be used with off-the-shelf downconverter technology. Furthermore, the Spectrum digitizers are optimized for dynamic performance to ensure signals are acquired with high SNR and low noise. The units are equipped with fully programmable front end amplifiers and can be used with a range of specially selected low noise external amplifiers that make it possible to acquire and analyze low level signals that go down into the µV range.
Spectrum Product Features
- Digitizers with sampling rates up to 5 GS/s and Bandwidth over 1.5 GHz
- AWGs with output rates up to 1.25 GS/s
- 8, 14 and 16 Bit Resolution
- Ultra-fast triggering with Segmented Memory and FIFO Readout/Replay
- Streaming data to RAID disc arrays at up to 3 GB/s
- FPGA based Averaging and Peak Detection
Matching Product Families
- M4i.66xx: 16 bit 625 MS/s to 1.25 GS/s AWG
- DN2.66x: 16 Bit 625 MS/s to 1.25 GS/s LXI AWG with up to 6 additional marker channels
- M4i.22xx: 8 Bit 1.25 GS/s to 5 GS/s Digitizer
- M4i.44xx: 16 Bit 250 MS/s to 14 Bit 500 MS/s Digitizer
Case Study: AWG used for Quantum Research
Precision is always important in research and there can be few research areas needing greater precision than that of quantum research. The Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information at the University of Innsbruck, Austria needed an Arbitrary Waveform Generator (AWG) to generate a wide variety of signals for their research.Read more >>
Case Study: AWG used for atomic experiment at Stuttgart University
The Stuttgart University has chosen a Spectrum Arbitrary Waveform Generator for their experiments in which single atoms in a diamond are replaced by nitrogen atoms. This method is a base for applications like a magnetic field detector at the atomic level or a qubit in a quantum computer.Read more >>
Case Study: AWG-card by Spectrum used to move around single atoms
How do you determine what is going on when you can't actually see the components in the system you are investigating? This is the challenge when investigating the quantum behavior of electrons in a lattice of ions. The solution being created by the Physics Department at the University of San Diego, California is to build a model that is slightly larger with observable components of atoms moving in an optical lattice.Read more >>
- At the Beihang University, Beijing, China, they are using an M4.4450-x8, 500 MS/s, 14-bit Digitizer to research a pulsed lock-in method for ensemble nitrogen-vacancy center magnetometry. A research paper on the topic can be found here
- Silicon spin qubits are promising candidates for realizing large-scale quantum processors and the subject of a collaborative research effort by the London Centre for Nanotechnology, University College London, United Kingdom, Quantum Motion Technologies, Windsor House, Harrogate, United Kingdom, CEA, LETI, Minatec Campus, Grenoble, France, Hitachi Cambridge Laboratory, Cambridge, United Kingdom, Université Grenoble Alpes, CEA, IRIG-MEM-L_Sim, Grenoble, France and the Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, UCL, London, United Kingdom. A research paper discussing Spin Readout of a CMOS Quantum Dot by Gate Reflectometry and
Spin-Dependent Tunneling, where an M4i.4451-x8 500 MS/s, 14-bit Digitizer is used for signal measurements is available here
- The technical University of Munich, Germany, is using an M4i.4451-x8 500 MS/s, 14-bit, Digitizer to study the spin dynamics in strongly coupled spin-photon hybrid quantum systems. The digitizer is used to acquire and analyse the I and Q components of IF signals that result from downconversion of microwaves emerging from a cryostat. A reference paper on the research is available here (PDF)
- At the Technical University of Denmark they are using an M4i.6631-x8, 1.25 GS/s, 16-bit, AWG to generate the required waveforms that control the electro-optical phase modulators (EOMs) on a scalable photonic quantum computing platform. A reference paper on the development can be found here
- At the Walter Schottky Institute and Physics Department, Technical University of Munich, Germany they have demonstrated a way of keeping a quantum bit alive by feed-forward decoupling. The research shows that a nitrogen-vacancy (NV) center strongly couples to current noise in a nearby conductor. By conditioning the readout observable on a measurement of the current, it’s possible to recover the full qubit coherence and the qubit's intrinsic coherence time. This technique uses a 500 MS/s 14 bit M4i.4451-x8 Digitizer and is discussed in a research paper that can be found here
- At the Technical University of Dortmund, Germany, they are using a 5 GS/s M4i.2234-x8 Digitizer in nonstationary quantum state tomography, adapting the technique to the special requirements of ultrafast spectroscopy. A white paper on the topic can be found here
- Researchers are developing techniques of non-stationary optical homodyne tomography (OHT) that allows the investigation of the hidden dynamics of light fields. At the Technical University of Dortmund they are using an M4i.2234-x8 5 GS/s digitizer to acquire signals from a balanced detector as part of their non-stationary OHT system which is discussed here
- At the Technical University of Dortmund researchers are using an M4i.2234-x8 5 GS/s digitizer to help them investigate the potential to eavesdrop on a trusted quantum random number generator. They experimentally realize an eavesdropping attack and discuss the process here
- At the QuTech and the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience, Delft University of Technology, in the Netherlands they are using an M4i.44xx series digitizer to test a programmable two-qubit quantum processor in silicon. Find out how by clicking here
- At the Department of Physics, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA they are using a Spectrum M4i.6631-x8 Arbitrary Waveform Generator to drive an acousto-optic modulator and a Rydberg laser to generate and manipulate Schrodinger cat states in Rydberg atom arrays. The research paper covering the experimental setup and results is available for download here