Quantum computing company D-Wave Systems Inc. is the latest technology firm to volunteer its expertise to researchers working on a response to the coronavirus outbreak.
The company announced today the immediate availability of free access to its quantum systems via its Leap quantum cloud service.
D-Wave is well placed to help out with coronavirus research, as it’s widely regarded as the first company in the world to build a working quantum computer. Quantum computers have a unique potential for solving complex problems as they’re base on a fundamentally different and vastly more powerful computer architecture.
The main difference between quantum and classical computers is that quantum processing can take place in multiple states simultaneously. Whereas traditional computers use binary digits or “bits” that can be represented as 1 or 0, quantum computing uses “qubits” that can be “superpositioned,” allowing them to be represented as 1s, 0s or both states at the same time.
In addition, qubits can use a method called superdense coding that allows them to hold two bits simultaneously. So two superpositioned bits held in one qubit means they can process four times the data of ordinary computers. Qubits also have the ability to correlate with each other so that each is aware of the state of all the others, meaning they can grow in power exponentially as qubits are added.
D-Wave is being joined in the initiative by numerous partners, including NECA, DENSO, Forschungszentrum Jülich, Kyocera Corporation, KYOCERA Communication Systems, MDR/Cliffhanger, Menten AI, NEC Solution Innovators Ltd., OTI Lumionics, QAR Lab at LMU Munich, Sigma-i, Tohoku University, and Volkswagen. Those partners will provide access to engineering teams that have experience on using quantum computers, and help to formulate both problems and their solutions, D-Wave said.
The company said it decided to make its resources available following a request from Canada’s government. It said it’s offering unfettered, free access to its systems via its Leap cloud service, which is mainly used by developers build “hybrid quantum applications” that can run on both types of computing architecture. The company said the offer is valid in 35 countries across North America, Europe and Asia.
“By providing free access to Leap’s quantum processing resources and quantum expertise, D-Wave and its partners hope to contribute to finding solutions to the COVID-19 crisis,” the company said in a statement. “Through this new initiative, anyone developing responses to the pandemic can immediately get unlimited, commercial contract-level access to the recently launched Leap 2. Leap 2 includes the hybrid solver service designed to bring both classical and quantum resources to quickly and precisely solve highly complex problems with up to 10,000 fully connected variables.”
The company said it believes its systems can potentially find answers to a range of complex problems relating to the coronavirus. For example, they could be used to analyze new methods of diagnosing the disease, or model the spread of the virus in different locations, optimize healthcare logistics, pharmaceutical combinations and much more.
“It is promising to accelerate the solution of complex problems in pharmacology and epidemiology, such as those that have arisen in the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis, by means of hybrid workflows from quantum-classical computer simulations,” said Prof. Dr. Kristel Michielsen from the Jülich Supercomputing Center.
D-Wave said researchers can sign up for access to its systems via this link.
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.(tagsToTranslate)Mike Wheatley(t)SiliconANGLE(t)D-Wave offers free quantum computing resources to coronavirus researchers
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