This talk provides an overview of worldwide efforts toward neutral atom quantum computing. While the talk will focus principally on NIST efforts, I will attempt to point out some of the important results from other groups while focusing on those aspects of neutral atoms that should make them an ideal candidate for quantum computing. Neutral atoms have two basic features that make them ideal. One is that they are among the best understood and controlled quantum systems known today, having led to Bose-Einstein condensation and the observation of the quantum phase transition from a superfluid to a Mott-insulator. The second feature that supports neutral atom quantum computing is that potential solutions for building a scalable quantum architectures based on neutral atoms already exist. The need for scalable quantum architectures, unfortunately places numerous constraints and requirements on physical systems. These requirements have been discussed by several authors; however, since the requirements are not widely known I will briefly review them along with their potential solutions for neutral atom systems. I will then conclude with a few speculative statements about the future of quantum computing and quantum information.

© 2004 Optical Society of America

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