(FinancialTimes) PsiQuantum will build an ultra-powerful commercial computer based on photonics by the middle of this decade, its founders said, as they prepare to emerge from “stealth mode”.
Underlying the company’s confidence is a manufacturing partnership with GlobalFoundries, one of the world’s leading semiconductor makers, which is making chips for PsiQuantum at its plants in the US and Germany.
“We’re now at a point where we have solved the critical roadblocks on the path to building a quantum computer with a million qubits, the scale required for all known useful commercial applications,” said Jeremy O’Brien, chief executive of PsiQuantum.
Hermann Hauser, the veteran technology investor and co-founder of Amadeus Capital, said PsiQuantum is one of 193 quantum computing start-ups round the world. He took a small personal stake in PsiQuantum when it was getting started — and helped to persuade the company’s founders to move from the UK to Silicon Valley because access to capital was better there. But Amadeus has invested in three other quantum companies with quite different approaches, he added.
O’Brien, whose research on optical quantum computing over 12 years at the University of Bristol laid the foundations for PsiQuantum, said: “Large, modular systems can only be built through photonics. Our first system, the Q-1, solves the scaling problems common to all approaches to quantum computing: manufacturability, cooling power, connectivity and control electronics.”
John Martinis, who headed Google’s quantum computer programme until last year and is now working with Silicon Quantum Computing, an Australian start-up using quite different technology, offered cautious praise for PsiQuantum.