Tech Briefs Magazine - May 2022 - 37

Materials & Coatings
Tiny Magnets to Create Miniaturizable Quantum Devices
Efficient coupling between two distant magnetic devices may be useful for quantum
information technology devices.
Argonne National Laboratory, Lemont, IL
A
team of scientists at the U.S. Department
of Energy's Argonne National
Laboratory, have achieved efficient quantum
coupling between two distant magnetic
devices, which can host a certain type
of magnetic excitations called magnons.
These excitations happen when an electric
current generates a magnetic field.
Coupling allows magnons to exchange
energy and information. This kind of
coupling may be useful for creating new
quantum information technology devices.
This instant communication does not
require sending a message between magnons
limited by the speed of light. It is
analogous to what physicists call quantum
entanglement. Following on from
a 2019 study, the researchers sought to
create a system that would allow magnetic
excitations to talk to one another at
a distance in a superconducting circuit.
This would allow the magnons to potentially
form the basis of a type of quantum
computer. For the basic underpinnings
of a viable quantum computer, researchCPW
Resonator
YIG
sphere
A schematic of the remote magnon-magnon coupling
circuit. Two single-crystal YIG spheres are
embedded to the NbN coplanar superconducting
resonator circuit, where microwave photon
mediates coherent magnon-magnon interaction.
(Photo: Yi Li/Argonne National Laboratory.)
ers need the particles to be coupled and
stay coupled for a long time.
To achieve a strong coupling effect,
researchers built a superconducting
circuit and used two small yttrium iron
garnet (YIG) magnetic spheres embedded
on the circuit. This material, which
supports magnonic excitations, ensures
efficient and low-loss coupling for the
magnetic spheres.
The two spheres are both magnetically
coupled to a shared superconducting
resonator in the circuit, which acts like
a telephone line to create strong coupling
between the two spheres even
when they are almost a centimeter away
from each other - 30 times the distance
of their diameters.
One additional improvement over the
2019 study involved the longer coherence
of the magnons in the magnetic resonator.
According to the team, because
the magnetic spins are highly concentrated
in the device, the study could point to
miniaturizable quantum devices.
The magnonic devices were fabricated
at Argonne's Center for Nanoscale Materials,
a DOE Office of Science user facility.
A paper based on the study, " Coherent
coupling of two remote magnonic resonators
mediated by superconducting
circuits, " was published in the Physical
Review Letters.
For more information, contact media@
anl.gov; 630-252-5580.
Elastic Polymer is Both Stiff and Tough
More sustainable, long-lasting polymer materials could decrease consumption of plastics.
Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
E
lastic
polymers, known as
elastomers,
can be stretched and released
repeatedly and are used in applications
such as gloves and heart valves, where
they need to last a long time without
tearing. But elastic polymers can be
stiff, or they can be tough, but they
can't be both. This stiffness-toughness
conflict is a challenge for scientists developing
polymers that could be used in
applications including tissue regeneration,
bioadhesives, bioprinting, wearable
electronics, and soft robots.
Polymer chains are made by linking
together
monomer building
blocks.
To make a material elastic, the polymer
chains are crosslinked by covalent
bonds. The more crosslinks, the shorter
Tech Briefs, May 2022
(Left) A highly entangled hydrogel and (right) a regular hydrogel. (Photo: Suo Lab/Harvard SEAS)
www.techbriefs.com
37
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ToC
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Tech Briefs Magazine - May 2022

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