According to Ars Technica, there might soon be a commercial, ion-based quantum computer, created by IonQ.
What sets this computer apart from traditional quantum computers is found in its engineering, Ars Technica says. Ion-based quantum computers require quantum bits, or qubits, that are built in an interconnected way to perform operations; simultaneously those qubits need to preserve “their quantum-ness.” IonQ’s quantum computers uses lasers pointed at individual atoms, which increases performance time, more accurate calculations, and fewer errors.
“Ion qubits and their logic operations outperform their superconducting brethren by a huge margin,” Ars Technica says.
Takeaways for decision makers:
This new type of quantum computer promises “to solve problems beyond the capabilities of even the largest super computers,” which boasts great advancements and capabilities for companies utilizing the technology, especially in the sciences.
IonQ, which recently used its ion-based quantum computer to accurately simulate a water molecule, says that the approaches offered from this new technology “are needed for practical applications in the promising field of computational chemistry.”
IonQ says that the field of computational chemistry uses accurate computer simulations of chemical systems instead of spending money on experiments, which makes it the perfect home for ion-based quantum computers. “These simulations require a precise figure for the energy of each molecule participating in a reaction, a value calculable in theory by considering all possible quantum interactions among the particles that constitute the molecule,” IonQ says. “For all but the most simple substances, the necessary calculations are difficult or impossible on even the largest conventional computers.”
These simulations are viewed as a promising way to develop new pharmaceuticals, chemicals and materials, something not as easily achieved through traditional methods. Plus, once these simulations are perfected and widely used, Christopher Monroe, IonQ’s Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, thinks ion-based quantum computers will make positive impacts in other fields.
“This same type of optimization could someday be translated to other types of problems, from logistics to financial modeling,” he said in a previous statement. “Anyone who wants to be at the leading edge of computational chemistry or other hard optimization problems should see our results as a wakeup call, to start co-designing applications today to take advantage of the next generation of quantum computers.”