Fraunhofer and IBM Unveil Powerful Quantum Computer

Fraunhofer and IBM officially unveiled Germany’s first IBM Quantum System One to the public. With 27 qubits, it is currently the most powerful system anywhere in Europe.

Sustainable transport, faster development of new materials and pharmaceutical products, more efficient analysis of complex financial flows are just some of the areas in which quantum computers will be opening new doors in the future. The aim, between now and then, is to develop the quantum algorithms that will allow this to happen. Once introduced, the system will be the first secure research platform available to companies and institutions for building and expanding their expertise and trying out quantum-based computing strategies with their applications in mind.

Together with IBM, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft operates the quantum computer in Ehningen close to Stuttgart. Importantly: All processed project and user data remain in Germany at all times and the IBM Q System One is operated in accordance with German data protection law.

“There is a huge interest, both in the industry and the world of research, in bringing quantum computing into use as a future key technology for securing competitiveness and technological sovereignty. With our platform, we offer large corporations, SMEs, start-ups and research institutions the chance to build their expertise and test new potential applications and business models,” said  Reimund Neugebauer, President of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. “The trailblazing initiative of Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and IBM for applied quantum computing in Germany and in Europe will create new opportunities for developing quantum computing strategies and application technologies for sustainable value creation.”

“I couldn’t be more excited about the availability of the IBM Quantum System One in Germany, which is the most powerful quantum computer in Europe,” said Dario Gil, Senior Vice President and Director of IBM Research. “The system is engineered for stability, robustness and reliability, which has the capacity to run quantum programs incredibly fast powered by a hybrid cloud architecture. I am confident this work between Fraunhofer and IBM will help to establish new communities of discovery across Europe to solve major business and societal problems.”

The state of Baden-Württemberg will provide up to 40 million euros for the project by 2024. Most of this will be for joint projects of the Fraunhofer Competence Center Quantum Computing in Baden-Württemberg in cooperation with universities, non-university research organisations and associated industry partners.

The Fraunhofer Competence Network Quantum Computing is the central point for getting access to the quantum computer. To access the computer, companies need a license agreement with Fraunhofer. The price structure is based on a monthly ticket. This arrangement means that users can also obtain short-term, flexible access for testing and assessing the technology.

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