Will Quantum Computers Control Traffic Lights?
(News-Daily) A team of researchers from Toyota and the University of Tokyo used a quantum computer to control traffic signals in a simulated large city, finding that it was superior to currently-used methods at reducing traffic imbalance and maintaining smooth flow.
The Toyota and University of Tokyo researchers utilized a D-Wave quantum computer with 2048 qubits to control traffic signals on a 50 x 50 simulated road grid with moving cars and compared its performance to conventional algorithms run on a classical computer. They found that the quantum computer produced superior results.
In futuristic cities, where satellites, cameras, and Internet-connected cars will permit widespread digitization of traffic data, there will be bountiful opportunities to streamline travel times and reduce accidents. But all of this constantly updating information poses a challenge for classical computers, which are restricted to basic units of data called bits, represented by 1 or 0. Quantum computers, on the other hand, make use of quantum bits – qubits – which can be 1, 0, or even 0 and 1, simultaneously. This makes quantum computers the ultimate multi-taskers when dealing with lots and lots of data.