Electronic quantum holography

Electronic quantum holography (also known as quantum holographic storage) is an information storage technology which can encode and read out data at unprecedented density storing as much as 35 bits per electron.[1]


In 2009 Department of Physics, Stanford University set a new world record for smallest writing. The previous record was set in 1989 by IBM scientists who used a scanning tunneling microscope to arrange 35 individual xenon atoms to spell out the company initials. Stanford team also used scanning tunneling microscope, however, instead of atoms they went to a subatomic level and used electron waves to write their university initials “SU” and create the current smallest writing in the world at 0.3 nanometers. This achievement simultaneously sets a record for the density of information. Before this technology was invented the density of information had not exceeded one bit per atom. Researchers of electronic quantum holography however were able to push the limit to 35 bits per electron or 20 bits nm−2.[2]


A chip of pure copper is inserted into a scanning tunneling microscope and cleaned. Carbon monoxide molecules are then placed onto the surface and moved around. When the electrons in copper bounce off the carbon monoxide molecules they create special interference patterns creating electronic quantum hologram. The projection of this hologram is an electronic object. It is then possible at particular energies to read the individual slices of this object like a stack of pages in a book.[3] A single hologram can contain several images at different wavelengths.[4]


  1. ^ "Sub-atomic-scale Writing Using a Quantum Hologram Sets New Size Record". SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. January 28, 2009. Archived from the original on 2019-06-11. Retrieved 2009-02-01.
  2. ^ Manoharan, Hari C.; Zeltzer, Gabriel; Foster, Brian K.; Mattos, Laila S.; Moon, Christopher R. (March 2009). "Quantum holographic encoding in a two-dimensional electron gas". Nature Nanotechnology. 4 (3): 167–172. doi:10.1038/nnano.2008.415. ISSN 1748-3395. OSTI 979946. PMID 19265846. S2CID 2057476.
  3. ^ "Manoharan Lab | Press". mota.stanford.edu. Retrieved 2019-05-13.
  4. ^ "Sub-atomic-scale Writing Using a Quantum Hologram Sets New Size Record----National Center for Nanoscience and Technology, China". english.nanoctr.cas.cn. Retrieved 2019-05-13.