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Japan wants its own Quantum Compter by 2025

​The Riken research institute in Japan aims to bring quantum computing technology into real-world use by around 2025 through integration with the Fugaku supercomputer.

January 15th 2023 | 218 readers

Japan wants its own Quantum Compter by 2025
Riken will also work with an alliance of companies including Toyota Motor, Hitachi, and Sony Group to promote the use of computing infrastructure that melds quantum technology with supercomputers. This hybrid approach of integrating quantum computing and supercomputers has gained traction in Japan and could help Japanese companies compete better in cutting-edge areas such as drugs, materials, and other fields.

Quantum computers have the potential to be over 100 million times faster than conventional supercomputers, aiding in complex quantum and digital simulations, but existing quantum machines need to be kept in extremely cold environments and they can be unstable and prone to errors. This heavy-duty cooling adds a significant amount of bulk, cost, and energy consumption, limiting where quantum computers can be used.

To overcome these limitations, Riken will establish a communications link between a quantum computer and Fugaku, the world's second-fastest supercomputer, to overcome this weakness. According to a report by Nikkei Asia, "Only core calculations will be offloaded to the quantum machine, while Fugaku organizes and reinforces the various outputs to approach the right solution." Riken plans to set up the first prototype in Japan by the end of March in the city of Wako, near Tokyo.

Riken's efforts to develop a hybrid approach to quantum computing comes as competition in the field intensifies globally. For example, Google has announced plans to build an error-free quantum computer ready for practical use in 2029 and in 2019, a Google quantum computer conducted a calculation in three minutes that would have taken a supercomputer 10,000 years. Other countries such as China and the US are also heavily invested in quantum computing research. Europe has also been exploring the hybrid approach, with Finnish research and technology organization VTT connecting their quantum computer HELMI with the pan-European supercomputer LUMI last month.

Philippe Nieuwbourg is an independent trainer and analyst, a specialist in data analysis for... Know more about this author

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