(Cleveland.com) Emily Banforth of Cleveland.com explains the implications of the 10-year partnership between the Cleveland Clinic and IBM on quantum computing. This project has the potential for Cleveland to be the site of major scientific advancements. The draw for the IBM-Cleveland Clinic “Discovery Accelerator,” is the technology’s potential, not so much what it can deliver now.
The partnership could eventually make Cleveland a site for a 1,000+ qubit computer, a milestone in quantum computing science. Researchers will explore how quantum computing interacts with other technologies, like artificial intelligence, to solve problems in healthcare. The Clinic’s Global Center for Pathogen Research and Human Health, where the accelerator is housed, will hire around 7,500 people.
The Discovery Accelerator in Cleveland will allow the Clinic’s Center for Global and Emerging Pathogens Research to use the technology to address its research areas in health care. The ability of quantum computers to simulate interactions could help model pathogens to assist in research.
“The partnership is not just on technology,” Dr. Lara Jehi, chief research information officer at the Cleveland Clinic, said. “The technology is a tool towards a goal, and the goal is advancing discovery. That’s why we have the big education component and workforce development component that is included in the partnership.”
Quantum computing is not eliminating the need for regular computers. This kind of technology is not meant to fulfill the same functions as a laptop or phone. But what quantum computing can potentially do is key for research, and holds promise in other fields like cryptology and finance, because of its power.
Quantum environments must be cold — the System One computer to be housed at the Clinic will use cryogenic engineering to keep it cold and isolated. Any variables, like heat or noise, could throw off the system.

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