After the IPO: IonQ takes on highly charged quantum computing challenge

By Sandra Helsel posted 14 Apr 2022

(VentureBeat) Jack Vaughn,computer industry journalist, reports on IonQ’s technical and financial progress. IQT-News summarizes the extensive article below:

Vaughn writes,”Trapped-ion quantum computer manufacturer IonQ is on a roll.”.. Recently, the company said its IonQ Aria system hit the 20 algorithmic qubit level — a measure said to reflect a quantum computer’s qubits actual utility in real-world settings. The company also made IonQ Aria available on Microsoft’s Azure Quantum platform.
Moreover, IonQ reported its first quarter as a publicly traded company. It reportedly gained $2.1 million in revenue in 2021 and expects revenue for 2022 to be between $10.2 million and $10.7 million.
Last year, IonQ claimed standing as the world’s first public pure-play quantum computing company. The IPO transpired as part of a SPAC, or Special Purpose Acquisition Company, which has come to be seen as an easier mechanism companies might use to enter the public markets.  The company grossed $636 million in a SPAC-borne IPO that will go toward the long-awaited commercializing of quantum hardware, Chapman told VentureBeat.

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Moving to larger scale production is a hurdle for all quantum players. Ion-trapping technology advocates may claim some edge there, in that parts of their base technology employ methods have long been used in atomic clocks.
For IonQ, another bow to manufacturability is seen in the company’s recent move from ytterbium ions to barium ions. This is said to create qubits of much higher fidelity.
In February, IonQ announced a public-private partnership with Pacific Northwest National Lab (PNNL) to build a sustainable source of barium qubits to power its IonQ Aria systems.
Along with IonQ’s partnerships with cloud players, comes a series of partnerships with industry movers such as Hyundai Motor (for electric battery chemistry modeling), GE Research (for risk management) and Fidelity‘s Center for Applied Technology (for quantum machine learning for finance). More such deals can be expected, as IonQ’s quantum computing efforts ramp up and roll out.

Sandra K. Helsel, Ph.D. has been researching and reporting on frontier technologies since 1990.  She has her Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.

 

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