Quantum simulators recreate the behavior on a microscopic scale of biological and quantum systems and even of particles moving at the speed of light. The exact knowledge of these systems will lead to applications ranging from more efficient photovoltaic cells to more specific drugs. Researchers are working on the design of several of these quantum simulators so they can study the dynamics of complex physical systems.
A superconducting quantum interference device is a highly sensitive magnetometer used to measure extremely subtle magnetic fields. It is made of two thin regions of insulating material that separate two superconductors placed in parallel into a ring of superconducting material. Scientists have focused on finding an analytical approximation to the theoretical equations that govern the dynamics of an array of SQUIDs.
Ions are an essential tool in chip manufacturing, but they can also be used to produce nano-sieves. A large number of electrons must be removed from the atoms for this purpose. Such ions either lose a large amount of energy or almost no energy at all as they pass through a membrane that measures one nanometer in thickness. Researchers report that this discovery is an important step towards developing novel types of electronic components made of graphene.
Researchers have achieved 14-percent efficiency in a 9-millimeter-square solar cell made of gallium arsenide. It is the highest efficiency rating for a solar cell that size and made with that material.