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IonQ, Hyundai extend collaboration, while Hyundai, Airbus get to use Forte

By Dan O'Shea posted 06 Dec 2022

IonQ and Hyundai Motor Company announced the next phase in their ongoing partnership, projects which expand on the partners’ earlier work, which has been going on since at least the beginning of 2022, when the companies formally announced their collaboration

IonQ also said its newest quantum computer, Forte, is now available to both Hyundai and Airbus–another IonQ partner for their respective quantum computing needs. The announcements were made on the first day of QC Ware’s Q2B conference in Santa Clara, California.

As for the next items on their to-do list, IonQ and Hyundai said they will use IonQ’s quantum computers to simulate electrochemical reactions of varying metal catalysts. This builds on the partners’ first project, which focused on simulation of lithium compounds and the chemical reactions involved in battery chemistry for electric vehicle batteries. The collective insights and knowledge gained from the quantum simulations will enable Hyundai engineers to potentially develop higher-performance EVs at reduced costs, the companies said.

IonQ and Hyundau also will work to develop machine vision algorithms capable of conducting object detection on three dimensional data from autonomous vehicles, an endeavor which expands on a second project announced last April, which focused on using quantum machine learning for object detection and image processing for recognition of objects like road signs by an autonomous vehicle. 

Of particular interest in the expansion of this project is the analysis of spatial and environmental data from lidar and other sensors, which could improve vehicles’ understanding of the nature and location of objects, people, and environment around them, the partners said, adding that this work ultimately lead to quicker, safer and more accurate decisions by autonomous vehicle systems without user input.

“IonQ’s continued work with Hyundai strengthens both our beliefs that quantum will drive the next phase of innovations throughout the automotive industry,” said Jungsang Kim, co-founder and CTO, IonQ. “Autonomous vehicles are still in their infancy, yet the quantum-derived algorithms we’re testing today have the potential to shape the commerciality, efficiency and safety of such systems.”

Regarding Forte, IonQ said the new 32-qubit quantum computing system, which was announced last May, will be used in Hyundai’s chemistry research and machine learning

work, as well as in Airbus’ recently announced cargo loading optimization project. Forte feature “all-to-all” qubit connectivity and control technologies that allow used to conduct testing and modeling and much larger, more realistic scales. IonQ previously had said Forte would be available to partners in late 2022 before broader availability next year.

Dan O’Shea has covered telecommunications and related topics including semiconductors, sensors, retail systems, digital payments and quantum computing/technology for over 25 years.

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