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RIKEN Selects Quantinuum System Model H1 for Large-Scale Hybrid Quantum–Supercomputing Platform in Japan

Quantinuum has announced a partnership with RIKEN, expanding its reach into the Asian quantum ecosystem.
By Kenna Hughes-Castleberry posted 09 Jan 2024

Quantinuum, the world’s leading integrated quantum computing company, announces a significant partnership with RIKEN, Japan’s premier comprehensive research institution known for its high-performance computing (HPC) center. This collaboration marks a pivotal step in integrating quantum computing technology into mainstream research and development. Under the agreement, Quantinuum will provide RIKEN with its advanced H1-Series ion-trap quantum computing technology, installing the hardware at RIKEN’s campus in Wako, Saitama. This move is set to bolster RIKEN’s capabilities in quantum computing, aligning with Japan’s broader strategic goals in technological advancement.

The deployment of Quantinuum’s quantum computing technology is a key component of RIKEN’s ambitious project to develop a quantum-HPC hybrid platform. This platform will integrate high-performance computing systems like the renowned supercomputer Fugaku with state-of-the-art quantum computers. The project, involving a collaboration between RIKEN, Softbank, the University of Tokyo, and Osaka University, focuses on developing software tools and applications essential for the seamless integration of quantum computers with supercomputers. The goal is to harness the strengths of both computational approaches, potentially revolutionizing various scientific and industrial applications.

This groundbreaking project, commissioned by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) under Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry, aims to showcase the benefits of hybrid computational platforms in the post-5G era. The integration of quantum computing with traditional HPC systems is expected to enhance computational capabilities dramatically, leading to advancements in various fields, including material science, pharmaceuticals, and complex system simulations.

Dr. Rajeeb Hazra, CEO of Quantinuum, expressed pride in being selected for this advanced project in Japan. He emphasized Quantinuum’s role as a commercial leader in quantum computing, bringing technical and operational expertise to the collaboration. Hazra highlighted the unique capabilities of the H-Series quantum computer, which is set to empower researchers in Japan and globally with its advanced computational power and efficiency.

On the other side, Dr. Mitsuhisa Sato, Deputy Director at RIKEN Center for Computational Science / Director of the Quantum HPC Collaborative Platform Division, shed light on the evolving role of quantum computers. He noted that with the increase in the number of qubits and improvements in fidelity, quantum computers are transitioning from experimental devices to practical computational tools. Sato pointed out that from an HPC perspective, quantum computers are seen as accelerators for scientific applications traditionally run on supercomputers, enabling computations beyond the reach of current supercomputers. He reaffirmed RIKEN’s commitment to developing system software for the quantum-HPC hybrid platform, leveraging its vast experience in scientific research and developing and operating cutting-edge supercomputers like Fugaku.

This partnership signifies a major leap in computational science, potentially leading to breakthroughs in various research domains and positioning Japan as a leader in the global quantum computing landscape.

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.

Categories: quantum computing, research, semiconductors

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