Quantum Machines unveils Pulse Processor Unit for real-time error correction

By Dan O'Shea posted 25 Feb 2022

Quantum Machines this week announced the general availability of its new Pulse Processor Unit (PPU), Hadamard, which the company said will be central to its OPX hardware and will enable the orchestration of advanced quantum computing algorithms as well as quantum error correction in real-time.

The PPU addresses a major challenge that quantum R&D teams face today in their reliance on pre-generated pulse sequences that leave them with a lack of agility or ability to adapt to unknown variables over the course of a quantum algorithm or experiment. That adds more time and resources to the process of getting their algorithms to run efficiently, translating to “incredibly long runtimes of quantum algorithms and low up-times” for quantum computers. 

While many different approaches have been emerging to deal with error correction in quantum computers, Itamar Sivan, CEO of Quantum Machines, told IQT News via email that Hadamard, part of the company’s Quantum Orchestration Platform, “is to a good extent approach-agnostic.”

He added, “It is a platform that allows experiencing and running a very wide span of QEC  [quantum error correction] protocols, and we’ve already demonstrated that Hadamard is adequate for error correction relevant for sc [superconducting] qubits, neutral atoms and trapped ions. While some teams plan to rely more on post processing and accounting for the errors after the sequence is accomplished, Hadamard is adequate for performing the errors inference and correction with ultra low latency, in real time.”

Hadamard can orchestrate protocols that were not previously possible in real-time, speed up runtimes significantly and improve performance, Quantum Machines said. Utilizing QUA, the company’s universal quantum pulse-level programming language, researchers can intuitively program even highly complex sequences, including multi-parameter calibrations, NISQ algorithms, and multi-qubit quantum-error correction, the company said, adding that Hadamard already has demonstrated speed improvements of 5000x. 

Hadamard is an 18-core processor that can operate dozens of qubits at a time, depending on the quantum processor modality and architecture. Each of the Pulser cores generates the pulses that operate the qubits, receives the data from the qubits, and performs the real-time heavy lifting for the algorithm to run most efficiently.

Sivan described Hadamard as “a leap forward” for quantum performance improvements and error correction, but also “definitely not the end of the story.”

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