The ever-growing demands on datacenters and networks to keep them running for everyone is leading to some creative ideas. Amazon is now partnering with another company to grow artificial diamonds to improve its networks.
Amazon is teaming up with Element Six, a division of the De Beers Group, to develop a new method of transmitting data securely over longer distances. De Beers is best known for its atrocious diamond mining and selling practices, but more recently has been working on growing artificial diamonds, which Amazon believes can improve networking between quantum computers.
Quantum networks use subatomic matter to deliver data, beyond the abilities of traditional fiber optic networks. Diamonds can be used in components to transmit data farther without breaking down, acting like repeaters over long distances. Artificial diamonds with the same impurities as real diamonds (like nitrogen atoms), and the same patterns of impurities, supposedly have greater potential for repeaters in a quantum-based network.
Artificial diamonds are already used for lenses and other integrated products, but they could become even more useful if they help push quantum computers into more areas and industries. De Beers opened a factory for lab-grown diamonds in 2020, located in Oregon and operating under the company’s Lightbox subsidiary.