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CMC: Accelerating R&D in Quantum Technologies

By Brent Jodoin posted 04 May 2023

 Accelerating R&D in Quantum Technologies

Adoption of quantum technologies is on the rise, along with the potential revenue generation and the possibilities of harnessing them for transformative solutions to real-world problems. But as is often the case with leading-edge technologies, skills development and affordability of state-of-the art technologies can be barriers.

CMC Microsystems, a not-for-profit organization, is working to lower these barriers and accelerate innovative R&D in quantum technologies – both in quantum computing, and the development of quantum hardware for novel quantum sensors, quantum computer and quantum communication components.

CMC democratizes the development of quantum computing solutions — their team of quantum scientists work with academics and industry partners to support the development of quantum algorithms and optimize them for real-world quantum computers, allowing partners to obtain useful results. “We’ve worked with partners on a variety of problems and solutions — from cybersecurity to protein design. They’ve been grateful to have access to these resources and guidance to develop their algorithms” says Hanieh Rad, CMC’s quantum technology staff.

On the quantum hardware side, in 2021, CMC introduced the world’s first cost-sharing fabrication service of superconducting devices. In this service, clients only acquire the area necessary to design their device—reducing costs and allowing companies to focus on product development. To enable this service, CMC developed a process design kit (PDK) to allow fast and automated layout of superconducting devices. “With CMC’s PDK, our partners can design superconducting devices compatible with foundry fabrication rules by focusing on circuit-level design, while using the PDK’s parametrized cells as plug-and-play components, rather than building the whole layout from scratch. This is similar to how a library of functions allows programmers to focus on the overall algorithm, rather than programing every little step of the code” says Charles Paradis, CMC’s quantum technology staff.

Accordingly, access to this new fabrication process spurred the development of another first – a training course on the entire design, fabrication, and testing cycle of superconducting devices. This fabrication course was created to address the complexity of building quantum hardware components, which require a combination of elements, such as quantum bits, couplers, and control and readout lines in a single chip. A small design or fabrication error can be a costly, complete failure of the quantum computer chip. Component developers must master concepts such as superconductivity and need experience in state-of-the-art tools and device fabrication techniques. CMC’s workshops provide all this applied knowledge required for the development of quantum hardware components, reducing the costs of experimental learning in industry and accelerating time-to-productivity.

Since 2021, CMC offers three quantum technology training courses in partnership with institutes across Canada including, NSERC CREATE program QSciTech, NSERC CREATE in Quantum Computing (Quantum BC), Quantum AlgoLab at Institut quantique, and the DistriQ, Quantum Innovation Zone.

These courses have attracted attendees from academia and industry – the upcoming workshop in 2023 offers a unique opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge about superconducting devices and to learn skills and tools that are easily transferable to other technology areas, such as silicon quantum photonics.

“Thanks to the support of the Québec Ministère de l’Économie, de l’Innovation et de l’Énergie, we are able to offer the “Build Your Own Superconducting Quantum Device Workshop course at a reduced price, with complimentary accommodations and travel assistance for graduate students. Applications are being accepted until May 11th and, since this is an in-person event, we are looking forward the networking opportunities throughout the week that will enhance the training experience,” says Udson Mendes, Quantum Technologies Team Leader, CMC Microsystems.

“Accelerating R&D in advanced technologies has always been at the heart of what CMC has done. There is so much potential for quantum technologies in coming years and decades, and we are excited to see where our clients, and everyone in the quantum ecosystem, take these technologies. Indeed, easy access to quantum technologies combined with talent development gives Canada and Québec a unique opportunity to solidify its position as world-leaders in the development of quantum technology research and development”, Mendes explains.

By Sponsor CMC Microsystems.


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