Landmark 10-year partnerships with the University of Tokyo and the University of Chicago to develop a new paradigm of
IBM Quantum milestones to lay foundation for integration of
large-scale classical and quantum systems
Collaborations will develop detailed blueprint to pioneer
HIROSHIMA, Japan, May 21, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- At the G7 Summit in
Japan, IBM (NYSE: IBM) announced a
10-year, $100 million initiative with
the University of Tokyo and the
University of Chicago to develop a
quantum-centric supercomputer powered by 100,000 qubits.
Quantum-centric supercomputing is an entirely new, and as of
now, unrealized, era of high-performance computing. A 100,000-qubit
system would serve as a foundation to address some of the world's
most pressing problems that even the most advanced supercomputers
of today may never be able to solve.
For example, such a powerful quantum system could unlock
entirely new understandings of chemical reactions and the dynamics
of molecular processes. In turn, this could enable researchers to
help study climate change through modeling better methods to
capture carbon; discover materials to build batteries for electric
vehicles and energy grids towards the goal of being cleaner and
more sustainable; and uncover more effective and energy-efficient
To usher in this powerful new paradigm, a global collaboration
and an activation of talent and resources across industries and
research institutions is being initiated. By partnering with the
University of Chicago, the University of Tokyo, and IBM's broader global
ecosystem, IBM will work over the next decade to advance the
underlying technologies for this system, as well as to design and
build the necessary components at scale.
Moving forward, IBM intends to expand these partnerships to
include Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab National
Accelerator Laboratory, both of which are members of the Chicago
Quantum Exchange and home to two respective Department of Energy
quantum hubs. Importantly, the two laboratories offer capabilities
and expertise that can facilitate delivering the technologies
envisaged in the race to build a quantum-centric supercomputer.
"Over the past several years, IBM has been at the forefront of
introducing quantum technology to the world," said Arvind Krishna, Chairman and CEO, IBM. "We have
achieved significant progress along our roadmap and mission to
globally establish useful quantum technology, so much so that we
can now, with our partners, truly begin to explore and develop a
new class of supercomputing anchored by quantum."
"Achieving breakthroughs at scale in quantum technology requires
deeply rooted and productive collaboration around the world and
across a broad range of industry, academic, and government
partners," said Paul Alivisatos,
President of the University of Chicago.
"Quantum information science and technology is at a crossroad where
foundational discovery and technical innovation will combine to
create real breakthroughs. The University of
Chicago is thrilled to partner in this endeavor."
"We expect our partnership will lead to scientific
breakthroughs, acceleration of the adoption of quantum computing
for the coming era, and active engagement into the critical
societal challenges of humanity. We also aim to contribute to the
realization of a better future society by nurturing diverse
talents," said Dr. Teruo Fujii, the
President of the University of
Building the Blocks of Quantum-Centric Supercomputing
The plans for this quantum-centric supercomputer are expected to
involve innovations at all levels of the computing stack, and
encompass the convergence of the fields of quantum computing and
quantum communication, as well as the seamless integration of
quantum and classical workflows via the hybrid cloud.
Because such a computer has never been made before, the first
step will be to lay out a blueprint. The design will have to
integrate classical computers and quantum computers – a challenging
task to date – as well as break new ground in quantum communication
and computing technology.
The foundation of this system will include milestones IBM has
already outlined on its Quantum Development Roadmap. This includes
the ability to scale and connect growing numbers of quantum
processors through quantum interconnects, as well as technology to
mitigate errors to fully harness noisy yet powerful quantum
By the end of 2023, IBM intends to debut three cornerstones of
its necessary architecture for quantum-centric supercomputers. One
is the new 133-qubit 'IBM Heron' processor. This processor is a
complete redesign of IBM's previous generations of quantum
processors, with a new two-qubit gate to allow higher performance.
It will also be compatible with future extensions to enable modular
connected processors to grow the size of the computer.
The second is the introduction of IBM Quantum System Two. The
new flagship system is designed to be modular and flexible to
introduce elements of scaling in its underlying components,
including classical control electronics and high-density cryogenic
wiring infrastructure. This system is targeted to be online by the
end of 2023.
The third is the introduction of middleware for quantum, a set
of tools to run workloads on both classical and quantum processors.
This includes tools for decomposing, parallel execution, and
reconstructing workloads to enable efficient solutions at
Over the next decade, IBM plans to work with university partners
and its worldwide quantum ecosystem to evolve how its quantum
processors can be connected via quantum interconnects. This work
will aim to enable high-efficiency, high-fidelity inter-processor
quantum operations and a reliable, flexible, and affordable system
component infrastructure to allow scaling to 100,000 qubits.
IBM's collaboration with the University of
Chicago will build upon the Chicago area's strengths in quantum research.
The University of Chicago seeded the
region's quantum ecosystem more than a decade ago with the decision
to make quantum technology a focus of what is now the Pritzker
School of Molecular Engineering. Chicago has arguably become one of the leading
global hubs for research in quantum technology and home to one of
the largest quantum networks in the country. Scientists from the
University of Chicago-headquartered
Chicago Quantum Exchange, which includes Argonne National
Laboratory and Fermilab National Accelerator Laboratory, four
universities, more than 40 industry partners, and researchers at
other world-class academic institutions in the region will continue
to expand the understanding and utilization of quantum
In conjunction with IBM, researchers at the University of Tokyo have been pushing forward on
topics such as the detailed analysis of noise deep inside quantum
processors, the development of efficient computation for quantum
artificial intelligence, and quantum chemistry simulation with
classical-quantum hybrid computations.
For more about the path to a 100,000-qubit quantum-centric
supercomputer, read the IBM Research blog.
Statements regarding IBM's future direction and intent are
subject to change or withdrawal without notice and represent goals
and objectives only.
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