How will quantum computing impact everyday life? At IonQ, we believe it’s a game-changer with far-reaching impacts; and total realization of this goal is not far off. We’ve been at the leading edge of the quantum revolution – with meaningful partnerships and various technical achievements. Between cloud accessibility, new qubit milestones, and quantum applications across life sciences, transportation and manufacturing, IonQ is front and center. And our presence at the IEEE International Conference on Quantum Computing and Engineering (QCE22) this year illustrated that point.
Here’s a look at what our team shared, learned, and presented at the premier quantum conference of the year. Throughout the week, we showcased our talent and technology and analyzed the latest quantum trends and applications for the future of quantum. In fact, our co-founder and Chief Scientist, Christopher Monroe, hosted an informative opening day keynote, while other IonQ executives and researchers led technical workshops and panels reviewing cloud accessibility, low-level programming for quantum applications, and the hurdles to overcome when developing practical quantum computers.
In case you haven’t attended this QCE22 event before, here’s some background: IEEE – the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers – is the world’s largest association of technical professionals, and drives awareness and technical advancement around electronic engineering, telecommunications and computer engineering. Its Quantum Week event, specifically, assembles the industry’s leading professionals, researchers, educators, entrepreneurs, champions and enthusiasts, who together, help further innovation and “bridge the gap” between the science behind this next-generation, algorithmic computing and the robust industry that has rapidly emerged around it.
To kickstart the event, Monroe’s keynote explored the overall quantum computing landscape, and as he noted, “It is hard to overestimate the potential weight of quantum computing on computing itself.” He then touched upon the topic of trapped ion computers and how they perform against other quantum architectures.
Fellow co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Jungsang Kim participated in a September 20 workshop that focused on constructing control systems for trapped ion quantum computers. Kim and fellow panelists also tracked recent momentum around quantum – from traditional manufacturers and new startups entering the fray, to National Lab groups developing (and open-sourcing) FPGA-based hardware, firmware, and gateware. These providers, the panelists noted, all continue to improve the reliability and robustness of their solutions, while theorists propose experiments with increasingly heavier demands.
Additional IonQ team members joined workshops and panel discussions throughout the week, exploring topics like working with the Microsoft Azure Quantum Platform, the need for low-level programming to deliver quantum advantage, and the key challenges when scaling towards practical quantum use. Researchers and executives from Microsoft, IBM and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory also participated IonQ’s IEEE workshops during the event. IonQ’s booth was a flurry of activity as folks from all over visited to chat with our team, with many expressing interest in joining IonQ or learning more about our company.
IonQ has seen significant growth in recent years, as it has helped to prove the performance and commercial viability of this revolutionary hardware. We are still the only quantum platform commercially available across the big three cloud providers (AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud), and we were the first pure-play quantum computing company to go public, doing so in October 2021.
The growth comes during a period that’s also seen demand soar for such quantum systems – including both enterprises and research institutions looking to leverage the technology to address problems once seen as highly complex or simply unnavigable. We’ve announced partnerships with Hyundai Motors to optimize batteries for electric vehicles and object detection for future vehicles; we also recently announced a partnership with Airbus, one of the world’s largest aerospace corporations, to explore the application of quantum computing for aircraft-loading optimization.
Additionally, we recently published results from our joint project with GE Research, which explored quantum for risk mitigation and found that the technology can be utilized for smarter, data-driven analysis and decision-making for commercial applications. Needless to say, we’re excited about what the future holds.