eleQtron and ParityQC collaborate on ion-trap quantum computing


As part of the funded ATIQ project (44.5 million euros total funding), eleQtron and ParityQC are working with a top-class consortium to produce ion-trap quantum computing demonstrators.

Quantum computers promise unprecedented computing power for applications where computers based on “zeros and ones” fail in principle. In the project “Quantum Computers with Stored Ions for Applications” (ATIQ), 25 partners from research institutions and industry are now developing quantum computer demonstrators in order to optimally exploit the advantages of ion-trap quantum computing and realize user- oriented hardware. In doing so, the partners are tackling major technical challenges to realize German quantum computer demonstrators and make them accessible to users in 24/7 operation. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research is funding the project with a total of 37.4 million euros.

Within this project, eleQtron and ParityQC will work together with JoS QUANTUM, the Institute for Theoretical Physics at Leibniz University Hannover, Infineon, Physikalisch- Technische Bundesanstalt, University of Siegen, Volkswagen and Boehringer Ingelheim to develop new algorithms for high frequency controlled ion qubits. eleQtron will implement these algorithms with high computational depth on its MAGIC technology. Within ATIQ’s co-design strategy, the ParityQC architecture will be implemented on the demonstrator to build highly scalable and parallelizable hardware. eleQtron and ParityQC will thus make quantum computing available for complex, economically relevant problems in financial mathematics, logistics, production and quantum chemistry.

“Ions are ideal qubits. They are provided to us by nature itself, are always identical, and their properties are also known with the highest accuracy. Within ATIQ, we will explore new methods to control these perfect qubits even in large quantum registers,” says Professor Christof Wunderlich, CEO of eleQtron and professor at the Department of Quantum Optics at the University of Siegen. ATIQ’s goal is to develop within 30 months a first generation of reliable, user-friendly and 24/7 available quantum computing demonstrators based on ion-trap technology. To this end, the leading groups in ion trap research at the universities in Hannover/ Braunschweig, Siegen and Mainz have joined forces with research institutions and industrial partners.

We want to take the next big step together. ATIQ is intended to be the crystallization point for a German ecosystem of ion trap quantum technology, bringing together technology partners, science and users and leading to relevant commercial exploitation

“We want to take the next big step together. ATIQ is intended to be the crystallization point for a German ecosystem of ion trap quantum technology, bringing together technology partners, science and users and leading to relevant commercial exploitation” says project coordinator Professor Christian Ospelkaus of Leibniz University and the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt Braunschweig, summarizing the motivation. “Especially when you combine a classical high- performance computer with such a quantum coprocessor, this team is unbeatable for new computing tasks” adds Professor Ferdinand Schmidt-Kaler of the University of Mainz.

ATIQ holds enormous potential for economic and scientific success. Quantum computers promise unprecedented computing power for applications where purely digital classical high-performance computers alone fail. The combination of a classical high-performance computer and a quantum computer, on the other hand, opens up completely new possibilities. There is therefore an urgent need for Germany to provide robust and scalable quantum hardware. The ATIQ consortium aims at optimized hardware for applications in chemistry. Novel chemical substances and the reactions to produce them could then be simulated on quantum computers. Another use case is in finance, where entirely new directions are being taken in credit risk assessment.

The core of the quantum processor in ATIQ is based on ion-trap technology, which is seen worldwide as one of the most promising routes to quantum computing. However, current systems are still complex laboratory machines with significant maintenance and calibration requirements by highly skilled personnel. ATIQ addresses the technical challenges to accomplish continuous operation with reliable high quality computational operations. To this end, the ATIQ partners, in cooperation with technology and industry partners, optimize the control of the processors with electronic and optical signals and thus aim to achieve high reliability and availability so that external users can execute computing algorithms independently.

In addition, such optimization also promises the upscaling of the quantum demonstrators from initially 10 to eventually more than 100 qubits. The strength of the consortium is based on the knowledge as developers of ion trap technology and the physical and technical fundamentals at the universities and research institutions Leibniz Universität Hannover / PTB Braunschweig, the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz and the University of Siegen, together with other research institutions, strong industry and technology partners and users and associations such as the Quantum Valley Lower Saxony.

The joint project “ATIQ – Quantum Computers with Stored Ions for Applications” is part of the BMBF funding measure “Quantum Computer Demonstration Setups”. Project duration is from December 1, 2021 to November 30, 2026. In total, the competences of 25 partners are bundled in ATIQ and coordinated at Leibniz Universität Hannover. Further partners are Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, University of Siegen, TU Braunschweig, RWTH Aachen, Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt, Fraunhofer- Gesellschaft, the companies AMO GmbH, AKKA Industry Consulting GmbH, Black Semiconductor GmbH, eleQtron GmbH, FiberBridge Photonics GmbH, Infineon Technologies AG, JoS QUANTUM GmbH, LPKF Laser & Electronics AG, Parity Quantum Computing Germany GmbH, QUARTIQ GmbH, Qubig GmbH and TOPTICA Photonics AG. Associated partners are AQT Germany GmbH, Boehringer Ingelheim, Covestro AG, DLR-SI, Volkswagen AG and QUDORA Technologies GmbH.

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