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Analog coupled oscillator based weighted Ising machine

Summary

We report on an analog computing system with coupled non-linear oscillators which is capable of solving complex combinatorial optimization problems using the weighted Ising model. The circuit is composed of a fully-connected 4-node LC oscillator network with low-cost electronic components and compatible with traditional integrated circuit technologies. We present the theoretical modeling, experimental characterization, and statistical analysis our system, demonstrating single-run ground state accuracies of 98% on randomized MAX-CUT problem sets with binary weights and 84% with 5-bit weight resolutions. Solutions are obtained within 5 oscillator cycles, and the time-to-solution has been demonstrated to scale directly with oscillator frequency. We present scaling analysis which suggests that large coupled oscillator networks may be used to solve computationally intensive problems faster and more efficiently than conventional algorithms. The proof-of-concept system presented here provides the foundation for realizing such larger scale systems using existing hardware technologies and could pave the way towards an entirely novel computing paradigm.
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Summary

We report on an analog computing system with coupled non-linear oscillators which is capable of solving complex combinatorial optimization problems using the weighted Ising model. The circuit is composed of a fully-connected 4-node LC oscillator network with low-cost electronic components and compatible with traditional integrated circuit technologies. We present the...

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Guest editorial: special issue on hardware solutions for cyber security

Published in:
J. Hardw. Syst. Secur., Vol. 3, No. 199, 2019.

Summary

A cyber system could be viewed as an architecture consisting of application software, system software, and system hardware. The hardware layer, being at the foundation of the overall architecture, must be secure itself and also provide effective security features to the software layers. In order to seamlessly integrate security hardware into a system with minimal performance compromises, designers must develop and understand tangible security specifications and metrics to trade between security, performance, and cost for an optimal solution. Hardware security components, libraries, and reference architecture are increasingly important in system design and security. This special issue includes four exciting manuscripts on several aspects of developing hardware-oriented security for systems.
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Summary

A cyber system could be viewed as an architecture consisting of application software, system software, and system hardware. The hardware layer, being at the foundation of the overall architecture, must be secure itself and also provide effective security features to the software layers. In order to seamlessly integrate security hardware...

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Valleytronics: opportunities, challenges, and paths forward

Summary

A lack of inversion symmetry coupled with the presence of time-reversal symmetry endows 2D transition metal dichalcogenides with individually addressable valleys in momentum space at the K and K' points in the first Brillouin zone. This valley addressability opens up the possibility of using the momentum state of electrons, holes, or excitons as a completely new paradigm in information processing. The opportunities and challenges associated with manipulation of the valley degree of freedom for practical quantum and classical information processing applications were analyzed during the 2017 Workshop on Valleytronic Materials, Architectures, and Devices; this Review presents the major findings of the workshop.
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Summary

A lack of inversion symmetry coupled with the presence of time-reversal symmetry endows 2D transition metal dichalcogenides with individually addressable valleys in momentum space at the K and K' points in the first Brillouin zone. This valley addressability opens up the possibility of using the momentum state of electrons, holes...

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A secure cloud with minimal provider trust

Summary

Bolted is a new architecture for a bare metal cloud with the goal of providing security-sensitive customers of a cloud the same level of security and control that they can obtain in their own private data centers. It allows tenants to elastically allocate secure resources within a cloud while being protected from other previous, current, and future tenants of the cloud. The provisioning of a new server to a tenant isolates a bare metal server, only allowing it to communicate with other tenant's servers once its critical firmware and software have been attested to the tenant. Tenants, rather than the provider, control the tradeoffs between security, price, and performance. A prototype demonstrates scalable end-to-end security with small overhead compared to a less secure alternative.
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Summary

Bolted is a new architecture for a bare metal cloud with the goal of providing security-sensitive customers of a cloud the same level of security and control that they can obtain in their own private data centers. It allows tenants to elastically allocate secure resources within a cloud while being...

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Suppressing relaxation in superconducting qubits by quasiparticle pumping

Summary

Dynamical error suppression techniques are commonly used to improve coherence in quantum systems. They reduce dephasing errors by applying control pulses designed to reverse erroneous coherent evolution driven by environmental noise. However, such methods cannot correct for irreversible processes such as energy relaxation. We investigate a complementary, stochastic approach to reducting errors: instead of deterministically reversing the unwanted qubit evolution, we use control pulses to shape the noise environment dynamically. in the context of superconducting qubits, we implement a pumping sequence to reduce the number of unpaired electrons (quasiparticles) in close proximity to the device. A 70% reduction in the quasiparticle density reesults in a threefold enhancement in qubit relaxation times and a comparable reduction in coherence variablity.
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Summary

Dynamical error suppression techniques are commonly used to improve coherence in quantum systems. They reduce dephasing errors by applying control pulses designed to reverse erroneous coherent evolution driven by environmental noise. However, such methods cannot correct for irreversible processes such as energy relaxation. We investigate a complementary, stochastic approach to...

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Bootstrapping and maintaining trust in the cloud

Published in:
32nd Annual Computer Security Applications Conf., ACSAC 2016, 5-9 December 2016.

Summary

Today's infrastructure as a service (IaaS) cloud environments rely upon full trust in the provider to secure applications and data. Cloud providers do not offer the ability to create hardware-rooted cryptographic identities for IaaS cloud resources or sufficient information to verify the integrity of systems. Trusted computing protocols and hardware like the TPM have long promised a solution to this problem. However, these technologies have not seen broad adoption because of their complexity of implementation, low performance, and lack of compatibility with virtualized environments. In this paper we introduce keylime, a scalable trusted cloud key management system. keylime provides an end-to-end solution for both bootstrapping hardware rooted cryptographic identities for IaaS nodes and for system integrity monitoring of those nodes via periodic attestation. We support these functions in both bare-metal and virtualized IaaS environments using a virtual TPM. keylime provides a clean interface that allows higher level security services like disk encryption or configuration management to leverage trusted computing without being trusted computing aware. We show that our bootstrapping protocol can derive a key in less than two seconds, we can detect system integrity violations in as little as 110ms, and that keylime can scale to thousands of IaaS cloud nodes.
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Summary

Today's infrastructure as a service (IaaS) cloud environments rely upon full trust in the provider to secure applications and data. Cloud providers do not offer the ability to create hardware-rooted cryptographic identities for IaaS cloud resources or sufficient information to verify the integrity of systems. Trusted computing protocols and hardware...

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The role of master clock stability in quantum information processing

Published in:
npj Quantum Inf., Vol. 2, 8 November 2016, doi:10.1038/npjqi.2016.33.

Summary

Experimentalists seeking to improve the coherent lifetimes of quantum bits have generally focused on mitigating decoherence mechanisms through, for example, improvements to qubit designs and materials, and system isolation from environmental perturbations. In the case of the phase degree of freedom in a quantum superposition, however, the coherence that must be preserved is not solely internal to the qubit, but rather necessarily includes that of the qubit relative to the 'master clock' (e.g., a local oscillator) that governs its control system. In this manuscript, we articulate the impact of instabilities in the master clock on qubit phase coherence and provide tools to calculate the contributions to qubit error arising from these processes. We first connect standard oscillator phase-noise metrics to their corresponding qubit dephasing spectral densities. We then use representative lab-grade and performance-grade oscillator specifications to calculate operational fidelity bounds on trapped-ion and superconducting qubits with relatively slow and fast operation times. We discuss the relevance of these bounds for quantum error correction in contemporary experiments and future large-scale quantum information systems, and consider potential means to improve master clock stability.
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Summary

Experimentalists seeking to improve the coherent lifetimes of quantum bits have generally focused on mitigating decoherence mechanisms through, for example, improvements to qubit designs and materials, and system isolation from environmental perturbations. In the case of the phase degree of freedom in a quantum superposition, however, the coherence that must...

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The flux qubit revisited to enhance coherence and reproducibility

Summary

The scalable application of quantum information science will stand on reproducible and controllable high-coherence quantum bits (qubits). In this work, we revisit the design and fabrication of the superconducting flux qubit, achieving a planar device with broad frequency tunability, strong anharmonicity, high reproducibility, and relaxation times in excess of 40 us at its flux-insensitive point. Qubit relaxation times 1 T across 22 qubits of widely varying designs are consistently matched with a single model involving resonator loss, ohmic charge noise, and 1/f flux noise, a noise source previously considered primarily in the context of dephasing, with temporal variation in 1 T attributed to quasiparticles. We furthermore demonstrate that qubit dephasing at the flux-insensitive point is dominated by residual thermal photons in the readout resonator. The resulting photon shot noise is mitigated using a dynamical decoupling protocol, resulting in T2 ~ 85 us , approximately the 1 2T limit. In addition to realizing a dramatically improved flux qubit, our results uniquely identify photon shot noise as limiting 2 T in contemporary state-of-art qubits based on transverse qubit-resonator interaction.
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Summary

The scalable application of quantum information science will stand on reproducible and controllable high-coherence quantum bits (qubits). In this work, we revisit the design and fabrication of the superconducting flux qubit, achieving a planar device with broad frequency tunability, strong anharmonicity, high reproducibility, and relaxation times in excess of 40...

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Secure and resilient cloud computing for the Department of Defense

Summary

Cloud computing offers substantial benefits to its users: the ability to store and access massive amounts of data, on-demand delivery of computing services, the capability to widely share information, and the scalability of resource usage. Lincoln Laboratory is developing technology that will strengthen the security and resilience of cloud computing so that the Department of Defense can confidently deploy cloud services for its critical missions.
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Summary

Cloud computing offers substantial benefits to its users: the ability to store and access massive amounts of data, on-demand delivery of computing services, the capability to widely share information, and the scalability of resource usage. Lincoln Laboratory is developing technology that will strengthen the security and resilience of cloud computing...

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Reduction of trapped-ion anomalous heating by in situ surface plasma cleaning

Published in:
Phys. Rev. A, At. Mol. Opt. Phys., Vol. 92, No. 2, 2015, 020302.

Summary

Anomalous motional heating is a major obstacle to scalable quantum information processing with trapped ions. Although the source of this heating is not yet understood, several previous studies suggest that noise due to surface contaminants is the limiting heating mechanism in some instances. We demonstrate an improvement by a factor of 4 in the room-temperature heating rate of a niobium surface electrode trap by in situ plasma cleaning of the trap surface. This surface treatment was performed with a simple homebuilt coil assembly and commercially available matching network and is considerably gentler than other treatments, such as ion milling or laser cleaning, that have previously been shown to improve ion heating rates. We do not see an improvement in the heating rate when the trap is operated at cryogenic temperatures, pointing to a role of thermally activated surface contaminants in motional heating whose activity may freeze out at low temperatures.
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Summary

Anomalous motional heating is a major obstacle to scalable quantum information processing with trapped ions. Although the source of this heating is not yet understood, several previous studies suggest that noise due to surface contaminants is the limiting heating mechanism in some instances. We demonstrate an improvement by a factor...

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