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Microsoft and Quantinuum achieve quantum computing milestone


Microsoft and Quantinuum recently announced a key breakthrough in quantum computing, demonstrating the most reliable, logical qubits to date.

Using Quantinuum’s ion-trap hardware and Microsoft’s new qubit-virtualiSation system, the team was able to run more than 14 000 experiments without a single error.

This new system also allowed the team to check the logical qubits and correct any errors it encountered without destroying the logical qubits.

Complex algorithms

With an error rate 800x better than physical qubits, this breakthrough will also help to unlock the next level of resilient quantum computing.

With significantly reduced error rates, the companies said quantum computers can tackle complex algorithms and long calculations that were previously unfeasible, opening up new possibilities for scientific research, cryptography, and problem-solving across various industries.

One of the most significant challenges for quantum computing has been noise. Without noise management, a quantum computer cannot surpass the capabilities of a classical computer.

Microsoft said advanced capabilities based on these logical qubits will be available in private preview for Azure Quantum Elements customers in the coming months.

“These advancements will help move us out of the current Noisy Intermediate-Scale Quantum (NISQ) level to Level 2 Resilient quantum computing. This signifies a major achievement for the entire quantum ecosystem,” Microsoft said.

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Microsoft said this is a crucial milestone on its path to building a hybrid supercomputing system that can transform research and innovation across many industries.

“It is made possible by the collective advancement of quantum hardware, qubit virtualisation and correction, and hybrid applications that take advantage of the best of AI, supercomputing, and quantum capabilities,” Microsoft said.

It said with a hybrid supercomputer powered by a hundred reliable logical qubits, organisations would start to see scientific advantage, while scaling closer to a thousand reliable logical qubits would unlock commercial advantage.

Microsoft’s ultimate ambition is to develop a hybrid supercomputer capable of solving some of the most daunting problems in fields such as chemistry and materials science.

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