The company says it has demonstrated its quantum charge coupled device (QCCD) architecture – a major technical breakthrough that accelerates quantum capability – and that it’s on track to release a quantum computer with a quantum volume of at least 64, which is twice that of the next alternative in the industry. That means, says the company, that the world will be able to begin undertaking problems that were impractical to tackle with traditional computers.
Quantum volume, developed by IBM, is a metric that can be used to express the effectiveness of a given quantum computer. It considers the number, connectivity, and low error rate of qubits – the quantum computing bits in quantum computers that are used to process information by leveraging the properties of quantum physics.
“The larger the quantum volume, the more complex problems you can solve,” says Dr. Patty Lee, Chief Scientist for Honeywell Quantum Solutions. “When our quantum computer is released, we will be able to execute larger quantum circuits better than any other quantum computer available.”
Further, says the company, it is on a trajectory to increase its computer’s quantum volume by an order of magnitude each year for the next five years. This breakthrough in quantum volume, says the company, results from its solution having the highest-quality, fully-connected qubits with the lowest error rates.
The company’s quantum computer uses trapped-ion technology, which leverages numerous, individual, charged atoms (ions) to hold quantum information. The system applies electromagnetic fields to hold (trap) each ion so it can be manipulated and encoded using laser pulses.
The trapped-ion qubits can be uniformly generated with errors more well understood compared with alternative qubit technologies that do not directly use atoms. These high-performance operations, says the company, require deep experience across multiple disciplines, including atomic physics, optics, cryogenics, lasers, magnetics, ultra-high vacuum, and precision control systems.
Today, says the company, it has a cross-disciplinary team of more than 100 scientists, engineers, and software developers dedicated to advancing quantum volume and addressing real enterprise problems across industries.
“Quantum computing will enable us to tackle complex scientific and business challenges, driving step-change improvements in computational power, operating costs and speed,” says Honeywell Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Darius Adamczyk. “Materials companies will explore new molecular structures. Transportation companies will optimize logistics. Financial institutions will need faster and more precise software applications. Pharmaceutical companies will accelerate the discovery of new drugs. Honeywell is striving to influence how quantum computing evolves and to create opportunities for our customers to benefit from this powerful new technology.”
The company also announced it has made strategic investments in two leading quantum computing software providers and will work together to develop quantum computing algorithms with JPMorgan Chase. For more, see the company’s scientific paper on its QCCD architecture: “Demonstration of the QCCD trapped-ion quantum computer architecture.”
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