Juan Ignacio Cirac is a Spanish physicist who has proposed some of the most important ideas for applying quantum physics to computing. He is one of the minds behind quantum computers. For the past 18 years he has directed the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and is a recipient of both the Prince of Asturias Award (2006) and the Wolf Prize (2013).
His research focuses on the quantum theory of information and quantum computing. Quantum computing has a different paradigm from current computing, which is based on bits and which processes information in only two states: zero and one (on or off). Quantum technology, on the other hand, works also by superimposing these states using ‘quantum bits’, also known as qubits. One key consequence of this is that certain problems which cannot be solved by a conventional computer would be feasible for a quantum one.
Interview: Aitzol Garcia-Etxarri
Telecommunications engineer (Universidad de Navarra, 2006) and Doctor in Physics (UPV-EHU, 2010). He is currently Ikerbasque Research Fellow in the Donostia International Physics Center (DIPC) and has been fellow researcher Gipuzkoa and postdoctoral researcher at the University of Stanford.
- 18 min.