The world now is moving with greater speed in the name of development. It is thereby, important to improve the efficiency and accuracy of the computers, on which everyone these days relies on for making certain calculations. **Quantum computers** are the computers that use quantum bits or **‘qubits’** unlike ‘bits’ in normal computers, for processing and storing data. A team of researchers from the **University of Maryland** has developed a quantum computer that is fully reprogrammable.

Conventional computers use strings of zeroes and ones representing ‘on’ or ‘off’ states to store numbers, letters, and symbols and perform calculations. While the quantum computers use ‘qubit’ that can be a zero or a one or simultaneously both. Such a feature enables quantum computers to perform actions at a faster rate than normal computers.

Quantum computers till date are programmed to run just one algorithm. The computer developed by the researchers is the first ever programmable and reprogrammable quantum computer.

The new quantum computer has been developed using five ‘qubits’. Each qubit is an **ion** or electrically charged particle, trapped in the magnetic field. **Ytterbium atoms** are used to formulate interactions so that quantum computers can be made programmable and reprogrammable.

The five-qubit quantum computer was tested on three algorithms that quantum computers, as prior work showed, could execute quickly: Deutsch-Jozsa algorithm, Bernstein-Vazirani algorithm, Fourier transform algorithm. The system scored 95%, 90%, and 70% in each of the algorithms respectively.

The lead author **Shantanu Debnath**, a quantum physicist and optical engineer at the University of Maryland, College Park said that in the future, the researchers will test more algorithms on five qubits quantum computer. He further explained, “We’d like this system to serve as a test bed for examining the challenges of multi-qubit operations, and find ways to make them better.”

Quantum computers prove to be more powerful and helpful when its potentialities are understood in the real sense.

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