Quantum state preparation and tomography of entangled mechanical resonators

Nature. 2022 Apr;604(7906):463-467. doi: 10.1038/s41586-022-04500-y. Epub 2022 Apr 20.


Precisely engineered mechanical oscillators keep time, filter signals and sense motion, making them an indispensable part of the technological landscape of today. These unique capabilities motivate bringing mechanical devices into the quantum domain by interfacing them with engineered quantum circuits. Proposals to combine microwave-frequency mechanical resonators with superconducting devices suggest the possibility of powerful quantum acoustic processors1-3. Meanwhile, experiments in several mechanical systems have demonstrated quantum state control and readout4,5, phonon number resolution6,7 and phonon-mediated qubit-qubit interactions8,9. At present, these acoustic platforms lack processors capable of controlling the quantum states of several mechanical oscillators with a single qubit and the rapid quantum non-demolition measurements of mechanical states needed for error correction. Here we use a superconducting qubit to control and read out the quantum state of a pair of nanomechanical resonators. Our device is capable of fast qubit-mechanics swap operations, which we use to deterministically manipulate the mechanical states. By placing the qubit into the strong dispersive regime with both mechanical resonators simultaneously, we determine the phonon number distributions of the resonators by means of Ramsey measurements. Finally, we present quantum tomography of the prepared nonclassical and entangled mechanical states. Our result represents a concrete step towards feedback-based operation of a quantum acoustic processor.

Publication types

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