Inside Quantum Technology

Quantum News Briefs June 13: Kipu Quantum signs R&D deal with Pasqal to optimize quantum algorithms; Navigation quantum sensor being tested in Greenland; The role of quantum key distribution in securing critical infrastructure + 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 June 13: Kipu Quantum signs R&D deal with Pasqal to optimize quantum algorithms; Navigation quantum sensor being tested in Greenland; The role of quantum key distribution in securing critical infrastructure + MORE.

Kipu Quantum signs R&D deal with Pasqal to optimize quantum algorithms

Kipu Quantum GMBH announced a two-year research and development agreement with PASQAL, a leader in neutral atoms quantum computing, to optimize quantum algorithmic function and expedite quantum benefits for enterprise. Quantum News Briefs summarizes.
Kipu Quantum is focused on developing hardware-specific algorithms for specific use cases and building enterprise solutions. The company created the first-of-its-kind algorithmic compression technology that reduces the length of quantum algorithms. Kipu’s algorithms are more suitable for near-term quantum computing hardware, especially those incorporating analog approaches, including PASQAL’s current quantum computers.
In January 2023, PASQAL announced a €100 million Series B funding round. 
PASQAL is on track to deliver a 1,000 qubit quantum computer, which it believes will deliver major commercial advantages over classical computers, by 2024. The company’s customers include BMW, BASF, Johnson & Johnson, Siemens, Airbus, LG Electronics and Thales among many others.
In their collaboration, PASQAL and Kipu will work to bring this compression technology to PASQAL’s quantum hardware and work conjointly from the hardware level to the algorithmic level to develop highly competitive quantum computing performance that will transform tomorrow’s aspirations into today’s expectations.
“We are very excited to bring together Kipu Quantum’s expertise in quantum algorithms with PASQAL’s impressive hardware capabilities,” said Prof. Enrique Solano, co-founder, and Chief Visionary Officer at Kipu. “The work developed between both teams will be a huge step forward in commercializing both Kipu’s and PASQAL’s technology.”
“Our unique technology allows us to solve much bigger problems than competing algorithm approaches on the same hardware,” he said. “It then becomes possible for our industrial customers to use much smaller quantum processors to solve their relevant problems thus reducing the wait time to useful quantum computing by several years.” Click here to read the original announcement in-entirety.

Navigation quantum sensor being tested in Greenland

A quantum sensor for measuring accelerations will be fixed to the cabin of a red Twin Otter propeller aircraft and fly in a zig-zag pattern over the Godthåbsfjord at Nuuk in Greenland in June. The sensor is being developed by the state-owned French company ONERA, and—with the test flights—DTU researchers will document how accurately the quantum sensor can determine the Earth’s gravitational field. The researchers will also test how to navigate more precisely with quantum-based navigation systems in the future if GPS satellite navigation gets jammed in a crisis situation.
The test flights with a quantum sensor will take place in the Green Quantum project, which is co-funded by the Danish Ministry of Defence Acquisition and Logistics Organisation (DALO), and the results will be used in a European initiative on quantum methods for future quantum warfare, which is being developed in the ADEQUADE (Advanced, Disruptive and Emerging QUAntum technologies for DEfence) project, funded by the European Defence Fund (EDF).
In ADEQUADE, 35 European partners are collaborating to reduce quantum sensor technology from the current colossal equipment, which takes up most of the aircraft, to a sensor-based chip technology the size of a coffee cup.
“In popular terms, the quantum sensor is comparable to an accelerometer, which is found in many modern smartphones and which is used to determine the orientation and movements of the phone. In the quantum sensor, the accelerometer is located in a vacuum container where rubidium atoms have been cooled to close to absolute zero, i.e. -273 degrees. The movements of the atoms accurately reflect the Earth’s gravity and the aircraft’s accelerations and are registered using laser,” explains René Forsberg, Professor at DTU Space. The instrument development is still at an early stage, and the equipment weighs several hundred kilos with the accompanying electronics, lasers, and vacuum equipment. Click here for original article in-entirety.

The role of quantum key distribution in securing critical infrastructure

The security of critical infrastructure is a top priority for governments and organizations worldwide. As our reliance on technology continues to grow, so does the need for robust cybersecurity measures to protect sensitive information and vital systems from cyberattacks. One promising solution to this challenge is Quantum Key Distribution (QKD), a cutting-edge technology that leverages the principles of quantum mechanics to enable secure communication.
The potential of QKD in enhancing critical infrastructure security is immense. Traditional encryption methods, such as the widely used RSA algorithm, rely on the computational difficulty of factoring large prime numbers. However, these methods are vulnerable to attacks from quantum computers, which are expected to become a reality in the coming decades. Quantum computers have the potential to solve complex mathematical problems, such as factoring large numbers, exponentially faster than classical computers. This would render current encryption methods obsolete, leaving critical infrastructure exposed to cyber threats.
In contrast, QKD is resistant to attacks from quantum computers, as it does not rely on computational complexity for security. Instead, it harnesses the laws of quantum mechanics to ensure that any attempt to intercept the key will be detected, alerting the communicating parties and allowing them to take appropriate action. This feature makes QKD an attractive option for securing critical infrastructure, as it provides long-term security against emerging quantum threats.
Despite its promising potential, QKD is not without its challenges. One of the main obstacles to widespread adoption is the limited range of current QKD systems, which typically operate over distances of up to 100 kilometers. Another challenge is the integration of QKD with existing communication infrastructure. Current QKD systems often require dedicated fiber-optic links, which can be costly and impractical for large-scale deployment.
In conclusion, Quantum Key Distribution holds great promise for enhancing the security of critical infrastructure in the face of emerging quantum threats. By leveraging the principles of quantum mechanics, QKD offers a robust and future-proof solution for secure communication. As research and development continue to advance, it is likely that QKD will play an increasingly important role in protecting our vital systems and information from cyberattacks. Click here to read original article in June 13 CityLife in-entirety.

Quantum sensing breakthrough: Infleqtion unveils the future of resilient navigation

Infleqtion has announce breakthrough progress in advancing the field of quantum navigation by a University Colorado team in work supported by Infleqtion and the National Science Foundation. The team demonstrated the world’s first software-configured, quantum-enabled high-performance accelerometer by combining machine learning with quantum sensing. It is designed for Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) applications that operate under accelerations up to several tens of times the Earth’s gravity (g). Quantum News Briefs summarizes the announcement.
The accelerometer demonstrated a sensor volume reduction of greater than a factor of 10,000 times compared to the current state-of-the-art technology. It also withstands unwanted vibrations by a factor of 10-100 times greater than traditional atom-based sensors. This achievement demonstrates how atom interferometry’s exceptional precision can be applied in practical, real-world environments.
These results highlight the future of quantum sensing as a high-precision alternative to satellite-based GPS signals, addressing vulnerabilities associated with GPS denial or spoofing tactics employed by adversaries. This breakthrough enables optimal adaptability to mission requirements and opens new possibilities for precision in real-world GPS-denied environments. The findings will be presented at the annual APS Division of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics Meeting. Click here to read June 7 announcement in-entirety on Infleqtion’s website.

Sandra K. Helsel, Ph.D. has been researching and reporting on frontier technologies since 1990.  She has her Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.

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