What reaching 20 qubits means for quantum computing


Over the coming decades, more and more companies are expected to harness the power of quantum computing to solve complex challenges in cybersecurity, finance, life sciences, logistics and sustainability – problems that increasingly need to be solved with more powerful technology than a conventional computer.

Global financing and investment activity in quantum technology exceeded $1.4 billion in 2021, more than double that of 2020, according to McKinsey & Company.

Quantinuum, formed in 2021 by the combination of Honeywell Quantum Solutions and Cambridge Quantum, aims to accelerate the development of quantum computing and deliver quantum-powered real-world applications.

Quantinuum’s latest milestone: its H1-1 quantum computer has gone from 12 to 20 fully connected qubits and increased the number of quantum operations that can be performed in parallel.

Here’s what you need to know.

A qubit – short for quantum bit – is the smallest unit of data in quantum computing. Unlike the smallest unit of data in classical computing – called a digit or binary bit, which exists in either off (zero) or on (one) positions – qubits can exist as zeros and ones simultaneously. It is a capability of quantum computing that makes it more powerful than classical computing.

So for researchers using the H1-1 quantum computer, the upgrade from 12 to now 20 fully connected qubits to run more complex calculations than before without sacrificing performance.

The improved system has already been used. In a private preview of the H1-1 quantum computer, JP Morgan Chase was able to use the computer to produce an algorithm for natural language processing: a field of artificial intelligence aimed at training computers to understand words and phrases. conversations like humans. Their results were published in a preprint publication at arXiv.

Along with advancing the hardware capabilities of the H-series, Quantinuum is also developing the software and algorithms for use on quantum computers. Quantinuum recently announced the release of its new quantum chemistry software package, InQuanto. In collaboration with Honeywell PMT, Quantinuum is using InQuanto to explore how quantum computing could contribute to the development of new low Global Warming Potential (GWP) refrigerants.

Cybersecurity is another area where experts are looking to harness the power of quantum, and The Quantinuum platform Quantum Origin enables the generation of cryptographic keys from the H1 quantum computer that provide superior protection against rapidly evolving cyber threats.

Quantinuum’s hardware development employed a unique product strategy of continuously upgrading their hardware after initial product release, alongside customer usage. The recent upgrade from H1-1 to 20 qubits was an example of such an upgrade. And similarly, the second version of the System H1 machine, H1-2, is expected to undergo similar upgrades later this year.

Quantinuum is also developing its next-generation hardware technologies, which include more complex trap designs and other upgrades that will allow the company to boost its computing capabilities. All align with the hardware technology roadmap that Quantinuum has made public.


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