Computers based on quantum processes have the potential to be exponentially more powerful than today's computers. The processing in classical computing is based on combinations of “bits” that can be in one of two states (0 or 1). In quantum computing the processing is based on quantum bits – or “qubits” – that can be in a superposition of different states at the same time. Creating and sustaining qubits in the real world, however, presents many significant engineering challenges on account of the fragile nature of these systems. The exciting question is of course: what can we do with these machines once we start to create practical quantum computers based on multiple-qubit systems?

In this video, Andrea Morello from the University of New South Wales in Australia addresses this question. Among other possible applications he discusses the idea of using quantum computers to test the very foundations of the theory of quantum mechanics. This video is part of our 100 Second Science series, in which researchers give concise presentations covering the spectrum of physics.