Archive for June, 2002

Decoherence of electron spin qubits in Si-based quantum computers

June 20th, 2002  |  by  |  published in All, Papers

Phys. Rev. B, 66, 035314 (2002)

Direct phonon spin-lattice relaxation of an electron qubit bound by a donor impurity or quantum dot in SiGe heterostructures is investigated. The aim is to evaluate the importance of decoherence from this mechanism in several important solid-state quantum computer designs operating at low temperatures. We calculate the relaxation rate $1/T_1$ as a function of [100] uniaxial strain, temperature, magnetic field, and silicon/germanium content for Si:P bound electrons. The quantum dot potential is much smoother, leading to smaller splittings of the valley degeneracies. We have estimated these splittings in order to obtain upper bounds for the relaxation rate. In general, we find that the relaxation rate is strongly decreased by uniaxial compressive strain in a SiGe-Si-SiGe quantum well, making this strain an important positive design feature. Ge in high concentrations (particularly over 85%) increases the rate, making Si-rich materials preferable. We conclude that SiGe bound electron qubits must meet certain conditions to minimize decoherence but that spin-phonon relaxation does not rule out the solid-state implementation of error-tolerant quantum computing.

Tahan Research

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