Inside Quantum Technology

Quantum News Briefs: January 24, 2024: Agnostiq Partners with NextGen Cloud’s Hyperstack Platform to Increase Covalent Cloud’s GPU Capacity; AFWERX and Department of Air Force Award Qrypt with STTR Phase 1 Contract; $QTUM, Defiance’s Quantum Computing ETF, Surpasses $200 Million in Assets; The University of New Mexico launches The Quantum New Mexico Institute; and MORE!

Quantum News Briefs looks at news in the quantum industry.

Quantum News Briefs is a news series that looks at news in the quantum computing industry.

Quantum News Briefs: January 24, 2024: 

Agnostiq Partners with Nexgen Cloud’s Hyperstack Platform to Increase Covalent Cloud’s GPU Capacity

Agnostiq, Inc., a Toronto-based advanced computing startup, has announced its partnership with Nexgen Cloud’s Hyperstack, integrating their Hyperstack GPU compute resources into Agnostiq’s Covalent Cloud offering. This collaboration will provide Covalent Cloud customers with seamless access to a wide range of premium GPU hardware, including NVIDIA H100, A100, and L40, significantly expanding the GPU resources available on the Covalent Cloud platform. The partnership aims to cater to the growing demand for high-performance GPUs in AI and machine learning, particularly benefiting startups developing advanced AI applications. The Covalent Cloud offers on-demand access to GPUs without needing long-term contracts and enhances its services with features like serverless functions, workflow orchestration, and multi-cloud compatibility. This move addresses the increasing difficulty many companies face accessing premium GPU hardware, positioning Hyperstack as a leading provider of specialized cloud services. Nexgen Cloud CEO Chris Starkey emphasized their commitment to democratizing accelerated computing, combining top-tier hardware and user-friendly services to empower groundbreaking AI applications.

AFWERX and Department of Air Force Award Qrypt with STTR Phase 1 Contract

Qrypt, a leading quantum-secure encryption company, has been selected by AFWERX for an STTR Phase 1 contract to enhance the cybersecurity of the Department of Air Force (DAF) with its innovative encryption solution. This collaboration, part of the Air Force Research Laboratory and AFWERX’s efforts to streamline innovation through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, aims to address the urgent challenges posed by quantum computing threats. Qrypt’s solution, which eliminates key transmission vulnerabilities and mitigates “harvest now, decrypts later” (HNDL) attacks, is crucial for DAF’s encrypted communications and data security. The company is partnering with the National Security Collaboration Center (NSCC) at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) to adapt its quantum-resistant encryption for DAF-specific use cases. This partnership emphasizes the growing importance of quantum security in national defense and the advancement of quantum-resistant cryptography.

$QTUM, Defiance’s Quantum Computing ETF, Surpasses $200 Million in Assets

Defiance ETFs, a leader in income and thematic investing, has announced a significant milestone for its Quantum Computing ETF (QTUM), which has now surpassed $200 million in Assets Under Management (AUM). This achievement underscores the rapidly growing interest in quantum computing, a transformative technology expected to revolutionize computing and data processing. The quantum computing market, having already exceeded $10.13 billion in 2023, is forecasted to grow at an annual rate of 36.89% through 2030, impacting industries like healthcare, finance, logistics, and energy. Sylvia Jablonski, CEO and Chief Investment Officer at Defiance ETFs, highlighted this achievement as a testament to the increasing confidence in quantum computing’s role in the future of technology. QTUM comprises 71 globally-listed stocks and follows a rules-based index, offering investors exposure to disruptive technologies such as quantum computing, AI, and machine learning. This milestone reflects the growing recognition of quantum computing’s potential in enhancing risk management, cybersecurity, materials science, energy, and logistics.

The University of New Mexico launches The Quantum New Mexico Institute

The University of New Mexico (UNM) has joined forces with Sandia National Laboratories to establish the Quantum New Mexico Institute (QNM-I), a new research center focusing on Quantum Information Science (QIS). This initiative builds on New Mexico’s pioneering role in quantum science, with UNM already contributing significantly by graduating over 40 doctorates in physics who are now leaders in QIS across various sectors. The QNM-I aims to position New Mexico as a key player in the second quantum revolution, which is set to enhance information technologies significantly. This partnership has been fostered through initiatives like the “road map” of collaborative partnerships launched by UNM and Sandia Labs, aiming to develop a skilled workforce and stimulate economic growth in quantum information businesses. The interdisciplinary institute will involve multiple UNM departments and seeks to make New Mexico a global hub for quantum companies and scientists. This move aligns with the goals of the National Quantum Initiative Act of 2018, which focuses on expanding quantum research and education in the U.S. The institute, incorporating the Center for Quantum Information and Control (CQuIC), plans to offer new fellowship opportunities and enhance collaborative research, thereby elevating New Mexico’s profile in the global QIS arena.

SEALSQ’s Advanced Postquantum Semiconductors to Play a Pivotal Role in the Launch of SEALCOIN cryptocurrency

SEALSQ Corp, a leader in semiconductor, PKI, and Post-Quantum technology, is set to advance the cryptocurrency world with the launch of SEALCOIN.AI, expected to be available on various exchanges by the end of Q2 2024. Currently in its pre-registration stage, SEALCOIN represents a significant advancement in cryptocurrency technology by being specifically designed to resist quantum computing attacks at the microchip level, thereby offering an unprecedented level of transaction security. This innovation stems from SEALSQ’s post-quantum semiconductor technology, which applies quantum mechanics principles to digital security, directly integrated into the hardware. Additionally, SEALCOIN is poised to transform the Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) economy, enabling secure data and currency exchanges among internet-connected devices. The introduction of NFC Microchips and cryptochip cards further bridges the gap between physical and digital security. This pioneering approach extends beyond cryptocurrency, aiming to fortify the entire digital financial ecosystem and IoT networks against quantum breaches, marking a significant step towards a secure, quantum-resistant future.

In Other News: Physics World article: “Quantum-secure online shopping comes a step closer”

Researchers from China’s Nanjing University, Renmin University, and Beijing National Laboratory for Condensed Matter Physics have made a significant advancement in securing online shopping against scams using quantum communication, highlights a recent Physics World article. They developed a quantum digital security (QDS) protocol that lowers the qubit requirement for verifying e-commerce transactions by employing a mathematical technique called one-time universal hashing. This approach generates shorter secure keys and is independent of measurement devices, addressing source flaws and avoiding the need for perfect signals. The QDS protocol involves three parties: a merchant, a client, and a third party, using coherent quantum states and secure quantum channels for transaction verification. The researchers successfully tested this protocol by signing a data file of size comparable to an Amazon Web Services customer agreement, demonstrating its efficiency even over significant distances. This breakthrough in quantum e-commerce could greatly enhance the security and practicality of online transactions, offering a more robust alternative to classical schemes and marking a step towards integrating quantum security in everyday commercial activities.

In Other News: Investor Place article: “If You Can Only Buy One Quantum Computing Stock in January, It Better Be One of These 3 Names”

Investors interested in the burgeoning field of quantum computing should consider three key stocks: Rigetti Computing (RGTI), IonQ (IONQ), and Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM), an InvestorPlace article says. Rigetti Computing, a vertically integrated quantum computing firm, has shown robust growth with a 46% revenue increase in 2022 and promising prospects for 2023. Despite a volatile year, Rigetti’s stocks are currently affordable, suggesting a good buying opportunity. IonQ, a leader in trapped-ion quantum computing, boasts the world’s most powerful quantum computer with a capacity of 32 qubits and plans to launch modular quantum computers. Although still in the pre-revenue stage, IonQ’s revenue is projected to reach $19 million in 2023, with shares increasing by over 259% in 2023. Taiwan Semiconductor, the world’s largest contract chipmaker and a supplier of AI chips for technologies like ChatGPT, expects to return to growth in 2024. The company’s expertise in advanced manufacturing processes positions it as a potential key player in the future of quantum computing hardware production. These three stocks are poised to be significant players in the quantum computing sector, offering promising opportunities for investors.

Kenna Hughes-Castleberry is the Managing Editor at Inside Quantum Technology and the Science Communicator at JILA (a partnership between the University of Colorado Boulder and NIST). Her writing beats include deep tech, quantum computing, and AI. Her work has been featured in Scientific American, Discover Magazine, New Scientist, Ars Technica, and more.

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