New Master’s Programme in Quantum Information Technologies Opening at HSE MIEM
Konstantin Arutyunov, Professor at the School of Electronic Engineering of HSE Tikhonov Moscow Institute of Electronics and Mathematics, discusses what the new programme offers its students and why the future lies with quantum technologies.
When Classical Physics Doesn’t Work
The devices that allow information to be transferred, stored, and processed require constant upgrades and improvements, but this process has its limitations. Some of these restrictions can be overcome using certain tricks, such as multiplexing and parallel signal processing. But all of the world’s top experts in the field of micro- and nanotechnologies are of the opinion that very soon – according to certain forecasts, in 2017-2018 – it will no longer be possible to further increase the level of integration of commercial nanoelectronics.
One of the reasons for this is more fundamental. When certain sizes are achieved, the current flow in subminiature components no longer follows the laws of classical physics, and the qualitatively newer quantum phenomena that break the device’s normal working mode start to play a role. A typical example of such quantum phenomena is the decrease in electrical conductivity before being moved to an insulating state. But the same ‘quantum’ characteristics can be used to develop qualitatively new principles for electronic systems – for example, to build new-generation quantum logical elements like qubits, which are based on information transfer, processing, and storage principles that are qualitatively different from classical principles.
Quantum information science is a newer discipline that is growing rapidly. This affects both the number of specialists capable of teaching it, as well as the level of preparation students are able to achieve in undergrad. But we have found a solution to these problems
The basis of such devices is formed by the laws of quantum physics, laws that open up completely new opportunities in fields such as information science, telecommunications, metrology, and computer engineering. Quantum information technology also opens up new horizons for fundamental research in a wide array of disciplines that until recently were considered to have nothing in common with one another – linguistics and quantum cryptography and neurosurgery and quantum informatics.
Our students will gain the knowledge and skills needed to conduct this kind of research. In addition, we have intentionally made this an English-taught programme, as this is the language that the natural sciences and engineering sciences ‘speak.’ Our graduates will be able to fully carry on professional conversations and scientific discussions as they present the results of their work to their colleagues all over the world.
How Learning Takes Place
The programme includes core classes and electives covering fields such as micro- and nanoelectronics, quantum mechanics, photonics, metamaterials, superconductivity, information networks and systems, and more. Particular attention will be paid to applied math, which students need in order to use specialised mathematics devices.
Quantum information science is a newer discipline that is growing rapidly. This affects both the number of specialists capable of teaching it, as well as the level of preparation students are able to achieve in undergrad. But we have found a solution to these problems. On the one hand, we have come up with a set of introductory courses that allow students who completed a basic undergraduate programme to effectively prepare for more complex, specialised disciplines. On the other hand, invited lecturers, who are leaders and top researchers in their fields, teach the specialised courses.
A significant portion of the programme consists of practicums connected with the technology used to prepare and microscopically analyse nano-sized systems. These classes will take place in the laboratories of the joint faculties and HSE MIEM’s partner research organisations.
Our ‘ideal applicant’ is someone with a bachelor’s degree in the natural sciences who has taken core courses in physics and higher mathematics. In addition, they should be motivated to learn from not only the thick textbooks that still don’t really exist in our discipline, but also first-hand from world-renowned specialists in the field
Our students will have access to the resources and equipment of the Quantum Optics and Telecommunications Joint Department with Skontel, the All-Russian Research Institute for Optical and Physical Measurements joint department, the Research Institute of Communication and Control Systems (NIISSU), the Rocket and Space Corporation Energia, and the laboratories of the Kapitza Institute for Physical Problems.
What Kind of Students Should Apply
We were happy to see radio and computer hardware engineers and designers; engineers from the radio-electronic systems, information technology, and security systems services; and specialists from laboratories in the fields of nanotechnology, cryptography, metrology and informatics.
But overall, our ‘ideal applicant’ is someone with a bachelor’s degree in the natural sciences who has taken core courses in physics and higher mathematics. In addition, they should be motivated to learn from not only the thick textbooks that still don’t really exist in our discipline, but also first-hand from world-renowned specialists in the field.
We also hope that the programme appeals to international students as well. We are confident in our ability to offer students from all over the world – the CIS, Far East, India, and Southern and Eastern Europe – a top-notch education at a competitive price. After studying here, it is certain that they will be able to find a job at an international company.
What Happens After the Master’s Programme
The trajectory of the Quantum Information Technologies master’s programme will allow graduates to find work at a broad array of research organisations, including the academic institutes of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the international research centres CERN and EASA, and national research organisations such as CNRS (France) or DFG (Germany). And, of course, we would love for our master’s students to stick around the Higher School of Economics for a while longer to go on into a PhD programme.
But our students will also be able to embark on a professional career trajectory as well. Their knowledge and skills will be sought after by research and design organisations in Russia’s defence, aerospace, radio-electronic, and nuclear industries, as well as by large international companies working on information technologies, D-Wave Systems and Google being just two examples.
Russian physicists have demonstrated how tunnelling contacts can be used for single-particle states spectroscopy in carbon nanotubes. The proposed technology of tunnelling contact fabrication and the spectroscopic method will help measure the exact nanotube bandgap value, which is the key characteristic required for design of any nanotubes-based electronic devices. Applied Physics Letters publishes the result of the study.
Researchers from HSE University, RAS, and Skoltech have compared actual specific energy consumption in the production of diamonds using traditional (mining) and innovative (synthesis) methods. Depending on the technology, 36 to 215 kWh of energy is consumed to produce a 1 carat diamond. It turned out that not all diamond synthesis technologies surpass extraction methods in terms of energy efficiency. The results of the study were published in the journal Energies.
The interaction of dust particles in Martian dust storms may cause electric fields that are powerful enough to have charges that induce standing electromagnetic waves known as Sсhumann resonances. This is the conclusion drawn by physicists from HSE University, the Space Research Institute, and MIPT. The paper was published in Icarus journal.
Students and researchers from HSE University and the Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics have examined the widely known ‘Prisoner’s Dilemma’ game using methods from statistical physics. They used the mean-field concept, a common tool for studying the physics of many-particle systems, to describe human decision-making processes. Researchers suggest that this model may be helpful for understanding systems with many participants. The results of the study are published in the September issue of the Physics Review Research journal.
As part of the Belle experiment, researchers were able to measure the energy dependence of e+e- -> B-anti-B, B-anti-B* and B*-anti-B* reactions in the 10.63 GeV to 11.02 GeV energy range for the first time. The new data will help clarify the nature of the group of exotic Upsilon mesons that have mass in this range. The results of the study were published in the Journal of High Energy Physics.
A team of Russian researchers from HSE University, the Russian Space Research Institute, and the Pushkov Institute of Terrestrial Magnetism (Russian Academy of Sciences) has described the development of modulational instability of electromagnetic waves in dusty ionospheric plasma, which is caused by a high intensity of electromagnetic emissions. The researchers considered inelastic collisions of ionospheric plasma particles and formulated new tasks and applications to be addressed at a later stage. The results are published in the Physics of Plasmas journal.
Researchers from the Institute of Earthquake Prediction Theory and Mathematical Geophysics (Russian Academy of Science) and HSE University have proven that asymmetry between meridional flows in the northern and southern hemispheres of the Sun depends on the anomalies of the solar magnetic field. Research undertaken by Elena Blanter and Mikhail Snirman reveals new aspects of the importance of solar magnetic field asymmetry for predicting the anomalies of the Sun’s activity. The article has been published in Solar Physics.
LHCb (Large Hadron Collider beauty) collaboration, one of the LHC (Large Hadron Collider) experiments, reported that their detector has identified particles that have not previously been detected in physics experimentally – excited omega baryons (Ω-b). Just several years ago, detecting such particles in LHC was believed to be next to impossible. Among proton particles, the excited ‘charmed omegas’ were preselected by an algorithm created by staff from the HSE Laboratory of Methods for Big Data Analysis and Yandex LLC. IQ.HSE talked to Denis Derkach and Fedor Ratnikov about their collaboration’s ‘fresh catch’ and about the point of ‘fishing’ on LHCb in general.
Alexey Starobinsky, a professor of physics at HSE University and a fellow at the Landau Institute for Theoretical Physics at the Russian Academy of Science, has been awarded the Dirac Medal of the ICTP, a prestigious prize awarded annually by the Abdus Salam International Center for Theoretical Physics. HSE News Service spoke with the laureate about his path to international recognition, his students, and the award.
Students in the Faculty of Physics, one of the newest departments at HSE, will find a homey atmosphere, understanding teachers, and the opportunity to engage in science from the first year of studies. Physics students Arslan Galiullin (2nd year) and Sofia Lopatina (1st year) will be our guides for this instalment of the Open House project.