HPCwire had an interesting interview with the Director of Quantum Department at AWS/Amazon. The interview initially focused on Amazon Braket, the quantum cloud that provides access to quantum computers from various manufacturers. Relatively recently, they also launched the Amazon Braket Hybrid, which focuses on classical quantum hybrid computations such as the quantum VQE algorithm. However, Amazon is not only about Bracket, but also about the Amazon Quantum Solution Lab. Here, Amazon mainly works on projects for possible quantitative solutions and applications, for example with BMW or Goldman Sachs. Then there’s the AWS Center for Quantum Computing, which Amazon runs with the California Institute of Technology. Here, Amazon’s goal is to build a quantum error-resistant quantum computer, the so-called FTQC (Fault Tolerant Quantum Computer), and they mainly focus on improved superconducting qubits. In addition, Amazon recently opened a section on quantum networks, the AWS Center for Quantum Networks. In general, Amazon is trying hard and loud about the Amazon Braket, so it is fairly secretive about its own research.
Similarly, Microsoft Quantum Vice President gave an interview to Physics World. They mainly talk about Azure Quantum, which is practically the same as Amazon Braket. Even Microsoft wants to focus a lot on hybrid solutions, which will also support AI. Compared to Amazon, Microsoft, especially in the field of quantum algorithms, has been the leader for several years. Moreover, Microsoft is still working on so-called topological qubits (they can be described as the Holy Grail, a type of qubit highly resistant to quantum errors. However, no one has seen such qubits yet). There is a bit of an unfortunate history in this research regarding the discovery of Anyons, that is, some quasiparticles. However, recent research shows that topological qubits can be achieved in a different way than using Anyons. And the search for zero-positions Majorana looks promising. The next talk was about QIR (Quantum Intermediate Representation), a software layer above which you can use any (high-level) programming language, and QIR will then generate code for a specific quantum computer, including improvements. The interesting thing is that QIR appears to be used by many of the big players in the quantum world such as Quantinuum or Quantum Computing Inc. Or Rigetti, Nvidia, or Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
A nice article about NASA and its history with quantum computers can be found at The Quantum Insider. This includes future plans. NASA realizes that quantum computers are still in their “little kid” age. However, they are actively considering and researching how to use it in the future. For example, about the designs of future spaceships for long distances.
Researchers from the United States have once again pushed quantum computing research beyond quantum dots. One of the main problems with quantum dots is that they are very sensitive to their surroundings. This means that if there are impurities around it, literally one atom that does not belong to it, it will change the energy ratios of the quantum dot. Unfortunately, these blemishes seem inevitable. For this reason, the researchers here have come up with a way to move the quantum dot on the surface of the material by a few nanometers so that it comes out of the influence of specific impurities.
Another theoretical work has appeared on the topic of quantum error correction, which approaches this problem differently. Let’s imagine for a moment a classic computer where the error detection system is highly developed and we have, say, five redundant bits, 11001. At first glance, there seems to be a better chance that the correct value is 1, but it’s not 100%. However, it can be improved if you know where the error is occurring, and then delete that value, i.e. something like 11XX1, where the situation is already clear. Such an approach was selected by a multidisciplinary team led by researchers from Princeton University. So far, this theoretical work has mainly focused on the qubits of neutral atoms. However, the theory should generally hold up, and the team is already working on a demonstration on a real quantum computer.
Multiverse computing has released a new version of the Singularity SDK. This primarily includes their Hybrid Solver solution, which combines classic and quantum computers to optimize portfolios, which can handle up to thousands. This SDK also contains an Excel plugin, which you can connect, in addition to classic solutions and solutions from the Multiverse, to the D-Wave Leap Hybrid.
There are a lot of games around us playing, for example, Raspberry Pi. Why not make a small quantum computer out of it, or rather simulate it? Nonprofit Quantum Village uQ has released: micro quantum, an embedded quantum simulator for the Raspberry Pi Pico, on GitHub The visualizations that support the LCD module.
In general, there is still a lot of lively discussion about quantum-resistant coding (PQC). as we know The US NIST has chosen four coding schemesthat will unite. At the same time, a moment before this announcement, there was another announcement about cracking the SIKE PQC algorithm only on a regular laptop – and it reached the finals for potential standardization candidates. Moreover, this is actually the third PQC algorithm that has cracked in the past few months. So the general discussion is how reliable the NIST process is (other standards organizations are not nearly as comprehensive…) and how we can trust the algorithms chosen. There are supporters on both sides. However, the majority agreement for the future is about solutions with the so-called cryptoagility, that is, this crypto will use multiple types or combinations of cryptographic schemes and if one of them is broken, it will simply switch to another. However, those of you in the IT field can imagine that this would be a very painful process. In addition, various speculations about the possible role of the NSA have slightly shaken credibility. Overall, the NSA is several years ahead of research on PQC algorithms, and the speculation is that they’ve let the algorithms go through where they know some back door… More about PQC in our article.
The German consortium Q.ANT, Bosch, TRUMPF and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) announced their intention to work on a quantum sensor to improve satellite stability. In this case, Bosch is essentially developing a quantum gyroscope – a cell filled with a gas whose atoms are subsequently excited laser pulses Then the magnetic field causes these atoms to spin. Then, if the satellite itself begins to rotate, which means a change in trajectory, primarily a change in altitude, the speed of rotation of the atoms in the sensor will also change. This gives us very accurate feedback on our satellite’s behavior and allows us to apply corrections to keep the satellite as high as possible. In fact, it is an inertial quantum sensor, which can also be used for autonomous navigation in cars or drones, etc. The main advantage is the potentially very small dimensions that allow to place such a sensor even in very small satellites, its stability and correctness.
McKinsey & Company has released another report on quantum technologies. This overview is particularly suitable for people who have not heard much about quantum technologies and would like to immediately understand the commercial potential of technical technologies without having to read about a technological background. Alternatively, you can check out our Quantum Series in Czech.
Quantum Business, Investments, and Grants
Multiverse Computing and Objectivity, a UK-based IT solutions provider, has announced a partnership to deliver quantum computing solutions to businesses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.. In this case, applications will focus on improvements using quantum computers (the singularity product of the Multiverse) for the financial, manufacturing, and healthcare sectors.
Institutions and start-ups from Finland and Singapore have concluded a memorandum on joint research in the field of quantum technologies.
Finland’s IQM and QphoX from the Netherlands agree to collaborate on developing a new control interface for scalable quantum computers using optics. Driving with optics has gradually become a trend. The main advantage is, for example, that the coolant of superconducting quantum computers does not introduce heat from the outside, unlike coaxial cables, where current flows and thus heat is also generated.
In Australia, under the leadership of the National Technology Council of Australia, the Australian Quantum Alliance is being created, the goal of which is to build an ecosystem and a quantum industry around quantum technologies.. The alliance includes Australian start-ups such as QuintessenceLabs, Q-Ctrl, Silicon Quantum Computing, Quantum Brilliance, Nomad Atomics and Diraq as well as larger players such as Rigetti, Microsoft or Google.
When I write here about various investments, only a few are in Europe. Private equity investments are dominated by startups mainly from the United States. What is the situation in the EU, and why there is not much investment here, although the EU is still the world leader in quantum technologies and what can help is discussed here.
Review was originally published On the blog Qubits.cz.