QSolid: paving the way for the first Germa

Cryogenic setup

image: cryogenic setup and control of a superconducting quantum computer at Forschungszentrum Jülich
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Credit: Forschungszentrum Jülich / Sascha Kreklau

Building a complete quantum computer based on state-of-the-art German technology is the objective of the QSolid collaborative project, which has just started and to which the Federal Ministry of Education and Research has allocated funding of 76.3 million euros for the next five years . The project focuses on quantum bits, or qubits for short, of very high quality, that is, with a low error rate. The quantum computer will be integrated into Forschungszentrum Jülich’s supercomputing infrastructure at an early stage and will contain several next-generation superconducting quantum processors, including a “moonshot” system that has been shown to exceed the computing power of conventional computers. The first demonstrator will go live in mid-2024 and will allow testing of applications as well as benchmarks for industry standards.

Quantum computers promise advances in the development of materials and drugs and in the optimization of traffic management solutions. In the future, they could vastly exceed the capabilities of conventional supercomputers for certain tasks. However, the technology is still in its infancy. While developing a usable quantum computer brings huge challenges, it also offers the opportunity to set industry standards and secure intellectual property rights from the start.

Focus on industrial applications

To pave the way to commercialization, 25 leading German companies and research institutions have joined forces in the collaborative project QSolid. The research consortium coordinated by Forschungszentrum Jülich is the largest of its kind in Germany. Together, the project partners aim to develop a complete ecosystem for a demonstrator based on superconducting qubits, which will be accessible to external users via the Jülich Unified Infrastructure for Quantum Computing (JUNIQ) and tailored to their individual needs.

Quantum computers with various processors

The partners aim to develop a system containing multiple quantum processors based on next-generation superconducting circuits with a reduced error rate. This approach is considered state-of-the-art by the international community and is also used by companies such as Google, IBM and Intel. The multiprocessor machine will be located at Forschungszentrum Jülich, where it will operate at least three different quantum chips in parallel: a “moonshot” system with computing power greater than that of conventional supercomputers, an application-specific system designed to perform quantum calculations for industry , and a benchmarking platform that prioritizes the development of digital twins and industry standards.

Focus on qubit quality

“Our focus is to improve the quality of quantum bits, a goal we pursue at every level at QSolid,” says Professor Frank Wilhelm-Mauch of Forschungszentrum Jülich. The susceptibility of qubits to errors is a sticking point in the development of quantum computers. The quantum states used to store quantum information respond extremely sensitively to external influences. They are often interrupted before all computing operations have been completed.

“The optimizations we have in mind start with next-generation superconducting circuits with a particularly low error rate, which we plan to achieve using high-precision manufacturing methods and new material systems, for example. Other essential elements include optimal control of qubits, as well as state-of-the-art artificial intelligence (AI)-based error prevention methods at the firmware level, an area in which QSolid aims to set new standards. Mauch. .

Network of research institutions

To achieve the ambitious goal of an independent quantum computer made in Germany, QSolid is bringing together research institutions, companies, and start-ups from across the country. Seven sub-institutes of the Peter Grünberg Institute in Jülich are contributing their expertise to the project; the Jülich Supercomputing Center (JSC), the Central Institute for Engineering, Electronics and Analysis (ZEA-2) and Qruise, a spin-off of Forschungszentrum Jülich, have also taken on a number of important tasks. Other research partners that are contributing valuable expertise include Fraunhofer IPMS and Fraunhofer IZM-ASSID, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Leibniz IPHT in Jena, the National Institute of Metrology (PTB), CiS Forschungsinstitut für Mikrosensorik, and several universities. , including the University of Ulm, the University of Stuttgart, the Freie Universität Berlin, the University of Konstanz, the University of Cologne and the Heinrich Heine University of Düsseldorf.

Establish a national supply chain

Numerous manufacturers and start-ups are involved in creating a national development and supply chain. ParityQC, HQS, Rosenberger HF-Technik, IQM, supracon, ParTec, Racyics, AdMOS, LPKF Laser & Electronics, Atotech, Atos science+computing ag, Globalfoundries and Zurich Instruments Germany participate as project partners, giving them the opportunity to establish the first industry standards and exploit the potential of technology at an early stage.

Quantum infrastructure at Forschungszentrum Jülich

In developing its superconducting quantum architecture, QSolid is able to draw on the expertise of a number of experts, including Professor Rami Barends, who moved from the Google research team to Forschungszentrum Jülich last fall. The next-generation quantum processors will be manufactured primarily at the Helmholtz Nano Facility in Forschungszentrum Jülich. This 1,000-square-meter clean room complex run by the Helmholtz Association is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities for the production and characterization of quantum components. By 2025, an additional facility will be built in the form of the Helmholtz Quantum Center (HQC), a purpose-built laboratory infrastructure for quantum computing.

First systems by 2024

The first prototypes of the planned QSolid demonstrators are being produced at Leibniz IHPT in Jena and are expected to be operational by 2024. A production line for superconducting circuits already exists at IHPT and will be converted to create a pilot line for quantum superconducting circuits. circuits as part of the QSolid project.

Significant groundwork has already been carried out to help achieve the project’s goals. The results of the European OpenSuperQ flagship project and the collaborative DAQC and GeQcos projects, which were launched in 2021, will feed into QSolid activities.

QSolid Project Summary

Title of the project QSolid (Solid State Quantum Computer)
Project duration January 2022 – December 2026
Budget €76.3 million (of which 89.8% is financed by the BMBF)
Coordination Forschungszentrum Jülich, Prof. Dr. Frank Wilhelm-Mauch
partners Forschungszentrum Jülich (PGI-12-, PGI-2, PGI-8, PGI-11, PGI-13, PGI-3, PGI-9, JSC, ZEA-2), Qruise, Fraunhofer, KIT, IPHT, ParityQC, HQS , Rosenberger, University of Ulm, PTB, University of Stuttgart, Freie Universität Berlin, IQM, University of Konstanz, University of Cologne, Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf, Supra, ParTec, RI, AdMOS, LPKF, Atotech, Atos, GF, CiS, Zi
Website http://www.q-solid.de/
Twitter https://twitter.com/QSolid_DE

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