


Spin Qubits with Quantum Dots
Leo Kouwenhoven
Kavli Institute of NanoScience, Delft University of Technology,
POB 5046, 2600GA Delft, The Netherlands
Quantum dots are nanoscale fieldeffect transistor devices,
which only contain a small number of electrons. This number can be
changed with a gate voltage such that one can create a box containing
exactly one, two, three, etc. electrons. This artificial, humanfabricated
system has many similarities with atoms: the electron energy spectrum is
discrete with a shell structure, which is filled with electrons according
to Hund's rules. We exploit the ability to tune insitu the quantum dot
properties for a controlled study of quantum mechanical interactions for
a specific number of electrons. These interactions lead to phenomena such
as twoelectron singlet and triplet states and the Kondo effect. We will
further discuss various quantum dot systems (semiconductor, nanocrystals
and carbon nanotubes) including some of the fabrication procedures. Although
these studies are presently pure scientific we will speculate on electronic applications.
One such speculation concerns the possible development of quantum
computers. We will outline the basic principles of a quantum computer
as well as the foreseen advantages. The realization of a quantum computer
contains many difficulties. We discuss these hurdles using qubits based on
quantum dots as an example. We particularly focus on the quantum information
contained in the spin degree of freedom of individual electrons. Our experimental
efforts focus on realizing spinqubit circuits. These little circuits have to
include a double quantum dot with controllable tunnel coupling between the dots;
electronspin resonance loop for performing single spin rotations; and a noninvasive
readout system. Our readout is performed by a quantum point contact detector.
Parts of this little qubit circuit are now being tested, some parts are already working.
[1] See for a review on quantum dots: Fewelectron quantum dots, L.P. Kouwenhoven, D.G.
Austing and S. Tarucha, Rep. Prog. Phys. 64, 701736 (2001). This review and other papers
can be found at http://qt.tn.tudelft.nl/
[2] Double transport through double quantum dots,
W. G. van der Wiel, S. De Franceschi, J. M. Elzerman, T. Fujisawa, S. Tarucha and L. P.
Kouwenhoven, Reviews of Modern Physics 75, No.1, 122 (2003)
[3] Single shot readout of an individual electron spin in a quantum dot,
J.M. Elzerman, R. Hanson, L.H. Willems van Beveren, B. Witkamp, L.M.K. Vandersypen and
L.P. Kouwenhoven, Nature 430, 4310435 (2004).


