Swedish businesses will have access to a working 25-qubit quantum computer from 2024-2025, thanks to new cloud systems that use Sweden’s Chalmers University of Technology’s existing quantum architecture.
The project was made possible thanks to an initial donation worth SEK 102 million (€9.2 million) from the philanthropic board Knut and the Alice Wallenberg Foundation.
Many US public clouds now offer remote access to quantum computing tech, but given the complexity of the technology Chalmers believes Swedish users will benefit from low-latency home-hosted systems.
The foundation is already funding a quantum computer that works at Chalmers for internal use. This technology currently has 25 active qubits but is being scaled with an effort to reach 100 qubits by 2029.
Ongoing R&D means that the program lacks the capacity for external projects, which has led to the idea of seeking funding for a fully functional image.
Now the Wallenberg Foundation has agreed to underwrite the project, guaranteeing the delivery of the second Swedish quantum computer dedicated entirely to industry and research.
Scheduled to be operational in 2024, the project’s testbed will have 12-24 months to be validated before open release the following year.
In addition to the 25-qubit computer, Chalmers will guide businesses in deploying quantum algorithms in key use cases, offering expert consultation from a bespoke “quantum help desk.”
This news follows Welinq’s announcement of the Parisian startup’s quantum 5 million pre-seed fundraise.
Welinq is interesting because it is among the group that will avoid ion-trap structures, an existing method of using qubits and quantum gates without using superconducting circuits that require very cold operating conditions.
While superconductors pose some disadvantages due to the size of the large units, Welinq says that ion-traps can also be activated using neutral atoms connected to separate quantum computers, essentially allowing the scaling of hardware to be scaled using a multiplying array of qubits.
That sounds especially attractive since scaling is a key barrier to delivering a broad quantum benefit. Some believe that the most important quantum applications may require 100+ qubits to function properly, with the 100 qubit milestone possibly providing a quantum advantage over all of the world’s supercomputers combined. Tech.eu reported in depth on Welinq’s concept earlier today.
Speaking for Chalmers and its Wallenberg Center for Quantum Technology, professor Per Delsing commented: “We will…
“Its purpose is to increase the level of Swedish competence in quantum technology and to reduce the level of use of quantum computers.
“The idea is that users shouldn’t need a lot of prior knowledge. It should be enough for a company to have a problem they’ve heard can be solved with quantum computing. The Quantum Helpdesk will help them from there.”
The Wallenberg Center for Quantum Technology has a 12-year funding remit to advance Swedish quantum innovation. The program was launched in 2018 and three years later its annual budget for the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation doubled.