Two-qubit entangling gates within arbitrarily long chains of trapped ions
Ion trap quantum computers are based on modulating the Coulomb interaction between atomic ion qubits using external forces. However, the spectral crowding of collective motional modes could pose a challenge to the control of such interactions for large numbers of qubits. Here, we show that high-fidelity quantum gate operations are still possible with very large trapped ion crystals by using a small and fixed number of motional modes, simplifying the scaling of ion trap quantum computers. We present analytical work that shows that gate operations need not couple to the motion of distant ions, allowing parallel entangling gates with a crosstalk error that falls off as the inverse cube of the distance between the pairs. We also experimentally demonstrate high-fidelity entangling gates on a fully connected set of seventeen Yb+171 qubits using simple laser pulse shapes that primarily couple to just a few modes.