Quantinuum shifts conversation from counting qubits to perfecting cybersecurity solution

The brand new quantum firm plans a {hardware} agnostic strategy mixed with Honeywell’s H1 and Cambridge Quantum’s tket.

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Quantinuum is the brand new firm that mixes trapped ion {hardware} from Honeywell Quantum Options and open-source software program from Cambridge Quantum to create a full-stack quantum computing firm.

Picture: Quantinuum

Quantinuum isn’t counting qubits within the race to error-corrected quantum computing. The brand new firm is asking a brand new query: “What can we do proper now with what we have got?”

Honeywell Quantum Options brings the System Mannequin H1 to the brand new entity whereas Cambridge Quantum contributes Tket. This mix of trapped-ion quantum {hardware} and open-source software program creates a full-stack quantum computing firm that already has paying clients and customers all over the world. The businesses introduced plans to create a brand new firm in June and regulatory approval is now full.  

Tony Uttley, president and COO of the brand new firm, stated Quantinuum is the middle of gravity for the whole ecosystem. 

“We would be the solely actually built-in full stack quantum computing firm on the planet,” he stated. 

The corporate’s technique is {hardware} and software program agnostic, with plans to combine different quantum software program into its tech stack in addition to different {hardware}. Uttley stated Quantinuum rejects the standard quantum knowledge that these new machines will want tens of millions of qubits to be helpful to companies at this time. 

“We took the precise reverse strategy and requested what can we do with it at this time?” he stated.  “We’ve got came upon you are able to do rather a lot at this time.”

SEE: Quantum actuality examine: Gartner expects extra 10 years of hype however CIOs ought to begin discovering use circumstances now

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Tony Uttley, president and COO of Quantinuum

Picture: Quantinuum

Quantinuum plans to reply the query, “What are you able to do for me now?” earlier than the yr is over. A cybersecurity product is within the works and can be introduced earlier than the tip of the yr. Ilyas Khan, CEO of the brand new firm and founding father of Cambridge Quantum, stated clients will be capable of use the flagship product off the shelf. 

“This cybersecurity product requires no one to vary any infrastructure,” he stated. “They don’t want to purchase a quantum laptop or lease one, or go to the cloud to rent one by the hour.”

Uttley stated the following product milestone in 2022 can be targeted on chemistry: an enterprise software program bundle that applies quantum computing to unravel advanced scientific issues in prescribed drugs, materials science, specialty chemical substances and agrochemicals.

“It is excellent to be at this place of creating quantum computing sensible,” he stated.

Quantinuum represents a turning level within the trade, Khan stated, as 2021 would be the yr quantum computing grew to become commercially related. 

“We’re very a lot within the Lotus 1-2-3 second,” he stated.For a while to come back, the trade will take into consideration the right way to educate the market to distinguish both efficiency potential or technological advances which could in flip shorten the timeline for commercially related quantum compute.”

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Ilyas Khan, CEO of Quantinuum

Picture: Quantinuum

SEE: Quantum computing: A cheat sheet

Daniel Newman, principal analyst at Futurum Analysis, stated that Quantinuum is getting ready to launching an utility that may be deployed and drive income at this time.

“It is an utility that may meet a necessity that is not at present achievable utilizing classical computing,” he stated. “I believe it’s nonetheless early days, and the preliminary concept of ‘Sensible Quantum’ will take a while to totally resonate, however directionally, I do consider this shift is starting to take form.”

Newman predicts that the way forward for quantum can be closely grounded in quantum augmenting classical computing to unravel advanced issues that the 2 can’t resolve as nicely collectively. 

Uttley sees the following part as parsing out items of 1 algorithm to totally different quantum and/or classical {hardware}, corresponding to working one half on a trapped-ion machine and one other on a GPU cluster. 

“That is the place the true OS improvement comes into play and there actually isn’t any different firm that may try this,” he stated. 

Open-minded strategy to {hardware}

 The 2 leaders stated that one of many new firm’s objectives is to assist the whole quantum ecosystem, however the selection to make use of different quantum {hardware} has a sensible aspect too. Uttley stated the H1 collection is at capability with all out there time being utilized by inside and exterior clients. 

“We do not have ample capability if we limit ourselves to the H1 collection,” Khan stated. “Additionally, it is superb for us to see how different {hardware} firms are starting to assist us to supply numerous options.”

The H1 just lately achieved a quantum quantity of 1,024, whereas IBM simply introduced that its Eagle processor has reached 127 qubits. The H1 makes use of IBM’s quantum computer systems along with its personal {hardware}. 

Honeywell is a provider for Quantinuum in addition to a buyer of the brand new firm’s providers. Honeywell has invested virtually $300 million within the new enterprise and Uttley predicts that Quantinuum will entice traders who’ve been hesitant about investing in quantum expertise.

SEE: Quantum information: Advances in error correction and startup of the yr award in France

“This new firm supplies a possibility that does not really feel such as you’re having a bet on a selected expertise however extra betting on the whole trade for fulfillment,” he stated. 

Bob Sorensen, senior vice chairman of analysis and chief analyst for quantum computing at Hyperion Analysis, stated there isn’t a clear winner in the intervening time among the many quite a few designs for quantum {hardware}, which incorporates superconducting qubits, trapped ions, photonics and extra.

“That’s precisely why this new firm is stressing that their software program emphasis can be {hardware} agnostic, in order to not power customers to select a single quantum computing implementation right now,” he stated.

Supporting open supply quantum software program

Quantinuum will promote software program merchandise below the Cambridge Quantum model.

“We have 100,000 of customers of tket and clients who depend on Cambridge Quantum Computing and we do not wish to lose sight of that,” Khan stated.

Holger Mueller, principal analyst and vice chairman of Constellation Analysis, Inc., stated the upper innovation and transparency of open supply applies to quantum software program improvement simply because it does with conventional software program engineering.

“Open supply has received on an IaaS degree and most of PaaS,” he stated. “Quantum isn’t any exception and open supply based mostly platforms and framework can be key for quantum as nicely.”

SEE: Q-CTRL launches quantum computing course for individuals who did not research physics

Newman stated this strategy ensures the portability of purposes to keep up worth of their improvement efforts even when a sure quantum platform would not wind up being the popular platform. The cloud is an efficient instance of why portability will matter. 

“As organizations wish to transfer workloads to totally different infrastructure, open supply generally is a nice means to perform that,” he stated. “Additionally, open supply supplies extra alternatives to democratize quantum utility improvement and allow the developer neighborhood to innovate and develop extra highly effective purposes.”

Quantinuum has about 400 staff with researchers and engineers making up about 80% of that group. The corporate’s software program headquarters will stay in Europe with the {hardware} HQ in Broomfield, Colorado. 

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