Project to look at first quantum data centre

December 06, 2021 // By Nick Flaherty
Project to look at first quantum data centre
The Smart Internet Lab in Bristol is to develop the first blueprint for a quantum data centre

The Smart Internet Lab at the University of Bristol is to develop the first blueprint for a quantum data centre.

The Quantum Data Centre of the Future project will commence in early 2022, bringing experts in classical data centres and networking together with experts in quantum computing and quantum communications as part of UKRI’s £170 million Commercialising Quantum Technologies Challenge.

There has been very little work on understanding how to integrate quantum technologies with existing data centres, says the lab. The High Performance Networks Group lab will work on classical data centre, quantum Internet and quantum networking wth industry partners.

“This is a truly exciting initiative. Adapting quantum computing and network systems to work in a data centre setting will require significant acts of invention and creativity,” said Professor Reza Nejabati, Head of High Performance Networks Research Group in the Smart Internet Lab. “This will bring a more practical light to the field of quantum technologies so they can benefit businesses and support the emergence of new type quantum computing algorithms and applications that will benefit from them far into the future.

“In collaboration with the project partners, we aim to design, develop and demonstrate a solution for integrating a quantum computer in a classical data centre as well as providing remote quantum secure access to quantum computers at scale and in a data centre setting.”

Bristol has hosted the first quantum network, and researchers at the university have developed ways to create a network of quantum computers that will be key to the data centre project.

“Quantum computers and communications systems are often described in isolation, but this misses the possibility for near term value to be created with quantum/classical hybrid systems. In this project, we will be investigating system-level solutions for optical metro quantum networks supporting remote access to quantum computing,” said Professor Dimitra Simeonidou, Director of Smart Internet Lab.

“We are really excited to work with leading industrial and academic partners to connect and integrate our city scale test-bed to remote quantum accelerated data canter and demonstrate its use for future industrial applications,” she added.

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