Infineon to build quantum processor

Infineon to build quantum processor

Technology News |
By Rich Pell

Infineon Technologies is working with five research institutes in Germany to build a quantum processor using superconducting qubits based on ion traps that can be turned into product.

The €14.5m “German Quantum Computer based on Superconducting Qubits” (GeQCoS) project aims to have a prototype chip in the next four years. This is part of Munich’s Quantum Valley which will be funded by the Free State of Bavaria with €300m over in the next three years.

“Quantum computing has reached the point where we now need to translate the science into practical application,” said Sebastian Luber, Senior Director Technology & Innovation at Infineon. “This, however, requires improvements to the features of quantum processors, and it must become possible to manufacture them on an industrial scale. The trick is to move forward, even if it is not yet clear which technology is best suited. Infineon is bringing its expertise as a semiconductor manufacturer to the project, highly skilled in scaling and manufacturing processes. Methods for the mass production of micro-structures, while maintaining consistent quality, are also needed for qubits,” said Luber.

Infineon has already developed an ion trap quantum processor chip together with experimental physicists from the University of Innsbruck as part of the PIEDMONS project and is working with the QUASAR project on a silicon-based quantum processor. Intel and IBM are also building superconducting quantum processor systems.

The move is also to help create a supply chain for Europe for the next generation of computer systems, as highlighted by the Heapac roadmap.

“If we in Germany and Europe don’t want to be dependent for this future technology solely on American or Asian know-how, we must move forward with the industrialization now,” said Luber.

“We are on the right track to be able to solve previously unsolvable computational tasks with the aid of quantum technology. We cannot yet begin to assess the huge potential of quantum computers, but there is no question that we will be able to use this technology in the long term to both gain new scientific insights and provide a whole new economic stimulus,” said Professor at the Technical University of Munich and Director of the WMI who is coordinating the project. 

Since 2017 Infineon has already been active as a pioneer in post-quantum cryptography, and is contributing to the development and standardization of quantum-safe cryptography methods.

The company will be at the 24th Annual Conference on Quantum Information Processing held in Munich next week from 1 to 5 February 2021.

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