Autonomously stabilized entanglement between two superconducting quantum bits

Nature. 2013 Dec 19;504(7480):419-22. doi: 10.1038/nature12802. Epub 2013 Nov 24.


Quantum error correction codes are designed to protect an arbitrary state of a multi-qubit register from decoherence-induced errors, but their implementation is an outstanding challenge in the development of large-scale quantum computers. The first step is to stabilize a non-equilibrium state of a simple quantum system, such as a quantum bit (qubit) or a cavity mode, in the presence of decoherence. This has recently been accomplished using measurement-based feedback schemes. The next step is to prepare and stabilize a state of a composite system. Here we demonstrate the stabilization of an entangled Bell state of a quantum register of two superconducting qubits for an arbitrary time. Our result is achieved using an autonomous feedback scheme that combines continuous drives along with a specifically engineered coupling between the two-qubit register and a dissipative reservoir. Similar autonomous feedback techniques have been used for qubit reset, single-qubit state stabilization, and the creation and stabilization of states of multipartite quantum systems. Unlike conventional, measurement-based schemes, the autonomous approach uses engineered dissipation to counteract decoherence, obviating the need for a complicated external feedback loop to correct errors. Instead, the feedback loop is built into the Hamiltonian such that the steady state of the system in the presence of drives and dissipation is a Bell state, an essential building block for quantum information processing. Such autonomous schemes, which are broadly applicable to a variety of physical systems, as demonstrated by the accompanying paper on trapped ion qubits, will be an essential tool for the implementation of quantum error correction.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.