Moving Beyond the Transmon: Noise-Protected Superconducting Quantum Circuits

Artificial atoms realized by superconducting circuits offer unique opportunities to store and process quantum information with high fidelity. Among them, implementations of circuits that harness intrinsic noise protection have been rapidly developed in recent years. These noise-protected devices constitute a new class of qubits in which the computational states are largely decoupled from local noise channels. The main challenges in engineering such systems are simultaneously guarding against both bit- and phase-flip errors, and also ensuring high-fidelity qubit control. Although partial noise protection is possible in superconducting circuits relying on a single quantum degree of freedom, the promise of complete protection can only be fulfilled by implementing multimode or hybrid circuits. This Perspective reviews the theoretical principles at the heart of these new qubits, describes recent experiments, and highlights the potential of robust encoding of quantum information in superconducting qubits.