The team is recognized for reducing, by a factor of 100, the heating in ion traps used in quantum computing. This enables greater control of the ion quantum states, thus breaking down a large impediment to quantum computation with the traps. To do this, they innovated and applied a cleaning technique that greatly reduced noise due to surface contamination. They also pioneered an approach to integrate the technique along with multiple material diagnostic tools into an ion-trap test bed. Due to these breakthroughs, ion traps are now being developed as a feasible technology for a scalable, universal quantum computer. They also have propelled development of a stylus ion trap as an extremely sensitive surface-measurement tool.