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Scientists Achieve Long-Distance 'Quantum Teleportation' For The First Time

Scientists Achieve Long-Distance 'Quantum Teleportation' For The First Time

They're hopeful it could revolutionise computing

Claire Reid

Claire Reid

Scientists have demonstrated quantum teleportation - sending tiny units of quantum information known as qubits - for the first time ever.

The qubits were transferred more than 27 miles and moved faster than the speed of light.

Scientists are hopeful this 'quantum teleportation' could completely revolutionise how computers work.

Quantum communication systems would be faster and more secure than the usual internet networks currently in place.


The breakthrough was carried out by a group led by Caltech, with experts from Fermilab, AT&T, Harvard University, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and the University of Calgary.

Fermilab scientist Panagiotis Spentzouris said: "We're thrilled by these results.

"This is a key achievement on the way to building a technology that will redefine how we conduct global communication."

The study, which was shared in PRX Quantum, said the 'teleportation' was instant - in fact, it was actually faster than the speed of light - and researchers found there to be a 'more than 90 percent fidelity rate'.

'Fidelity' is what is used to measure how close the end qubit signal was to the original one sent.

Speaking to Vice, Spentzouris added: "We wanted to push the envelope for this type of research and take important steps on a path to realise both real-life applications for quantum communications and networks and test fundamental physics ideas.

"So, when we finally did it, the team was elated, very proud for achieving these high-quality, record-breaking results.

"And we are very excited that we can move to the next phase, utilising the know-how and the technologies from this work towards the deployment of quantum networks."

Maria Spiropulu, Shang-Yi Ch'en professor of physics at Caltech, said: "We are very proud to have achieved this milestone on sustainable, high-performing and scalable quantum teleportation systems.


"The results will be further improved with system upgrades we are expecting to complete by Q2 2021."

Although, before we all get too excited, it's still going to be a way off before we're all using quantum networks.

Spiropulu told Vice: "People on social media are asking if they should sign up for a quantum internet provider (jokingly of course).

"We need (a lot) more R&D work."

Well, me and my super-slow broadband speeds are ready and waiting, guys.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Interesting, Technology