Emergent magnetic monopoles isolated using quantum-annealing computer

Isolating magnetic monopoles using D-Waves quantum-annealing computer


Using D-Wave’s quantum-annealing computer, Los Alamos National Laboratory has shown that it’s possible to isolate magnetic monopoles. This research could one day enable future nanomagnets.



“Artificial spin ices are frustrated spin systems that can be engineered, wherein fine tuning of geometry and topology has allowed the design and characterization of exotic emergent phenomena at the constituent level. Here we report a realization of spin ice in a lattice of superconducting qubits. Unlike conventional artificial spin ice, our system is disordered by both quantum and thermal fluctuations. The ground state is classically described by the ice rule, and we achieve control over a fragile degeneracy point leading to a Coulomb phase. The ability to pin individual spins allows us to demonstrate Gauss’s law for emergent effective monopoles in two dimensions. The demonstrated qubit control lays the groundwork for potential future study of topologically protected artificial quantum spin liquids.”

Technical paper link  “Qubit spin ice” Science  15 Jul 2021:

Los Alamos National Laboratory article



Andrew D. King1,*, Cristiano Nisoli2,*, Edward D. Dahl1,3, Gabriel Poulin-Lamarre1, Alejandro Lopez-Bezanilla2

  1. 1D-Wave Systems, Burnaby, British Columbia V5G 4M9, Canada.

  2. 2Theoretical Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87544, USA.

  3. 3Associate Laboratory Directorate for Simulation and Computation, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87544, USA


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