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Dr. Rudolph Gross during his speech about quantum computers at the Humboldt-Gymnasium Vaterstetten (HGV). © MLZ / TUM
On the 13th of March 2019, the mentor of physics at the Humboldt-Gymnasium Vaterstetten (HGV), Wolfgang Guggenberger, hosted the eleventh “Fascination Physics” – a series of talks about interesting physics topics. This year, quantum computers was the topic.
Professor Dr. Rudolph Gross from the Technical university of Munich was the top-class speaker of this year’s “Fascination Physics”. Gross has won various prizes and is one of the leading scientists in the field of cryogenic temperature solid-state physics. He particularly focuses on quantum phenomena in nanostructures and their application in quantum information technology. Professor Gross is also director of the Walther-Meißner-Institut of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and a speaker of the excellence cluster „Munich Center for Quantum Science and Technology“.
About 100 pupils and their parents joined Professor Gross on his journey into the world of quantum physics. This new computer generation enables us to calculate huge datasets in only a fraction of the time that common computers need. This extreme processing power helps with encoded data, optimization problems like the regulation of traffic flow, database search, and machine learning. Due to the underlying physical principles, the operating mode of a quantum computer differs fundamentally from the operating mode of common computers. In comparison to digital computers that operate based on the classical laws of physics, the functionality of quantum computers underlies quantum mechanical states.
The inspiring talk of Professor Gross raised many questions from the audience in respect to market maturity, costs, the specific operating mode, and hybrid computers that combine present and future technologies.
The talk series „Fascination Physics“ was originally initiated by Professor Dr. Winfried Petry. After spending many years at the TU München dedicating his life to science, Petry was given the honorary titel „Emeritus of Excellence“ in April 2018. Only a few highly merited professors are honoured with this title. Professor Petry now asks his colleagues in science to present more fascinating topics at the HGV. Such talks could engage more pupils in science and inspire them to start a student career at the TU München. Professor Gross, as well as this year’s moderator Professor Märkisch, both welcomed pupils to the upcoming “Student Days” and “Trial Studies” at the TU München.
Principal Rüdiger Modell and physics mentor Guggenberger were very content and are already looking forward to hosting the 12th event of the talk series in 2020. Considering all previous events of “Fascination Physics”, both Modell and Guggenberger emphasize the high quality of the talks and the variety of interesting topics.