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USask partners with PINQ²

EP&T Magazine   

Electronics Engineering computing PINQ² quantum Usask

Researchers will have access to one of the world's most powerful quantum computers

Scientists at the University of Saskatchewan (USask) are on the forefront of groundbreaking research thanks to a partnership with the PINQ² (Québec Digital and Quantum Innovation Platform), the sole administrator of Canada’s only IBM Quantum System One, a utility-scale quantum computer located at IBM’s research facility in Bromont, Quebec.

USask’s three-year agreement with PINQ² enables faculty and students affiliated with USask’s Centre for Quantum Topology and Its Applications (quanTA) to have access to the machine via PINQ²’s quantum computing platform. This collaboration significantly enhances the existing quantum computing research activities at USask.

Éric Capelle, Managing Director, PINQ² (Québec Digital and Quantum Innovation Platform)

IBM Quantum System One is powered by a 127-qubit processor, which has achieved utility-scale performance, a point at which quantum computers could serve as scientific tools to explore a new scale of problems that classical systems may never be able to solve. Under ideal circumstances, a qubit can be astoundingly powerful in comparison to the ordinary bits in conventional computers.

“We are delighted to collaborate with USask, granting their researchers access to one of the world’s most powerful quantum computers,” said Éric Capelle, Managing Director, PINQ² (Québec Digital and Quantum Innovation Platform). “This partnership promises groundbreaking research and innovation, and we eagerly anticipate the outcomes arising from this collaboration. Our mission is to facilitate accelerated digital transformation for organizations and empower individuals in utilizing the capabilities of quantum computing. This partnership exemplifies our commitment to achieving that goal.”

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One of the partnership’s first projects will be a study of complex health data in children suffering from chronic diseases, including juvenile arthritis. Using patient-derived data, researchers will deploy quantum-enhanced data analysis and machine learning techniques to uncover and understand hidden factors that may lead to such diseases, leading potentially to future preventatives and therapies. The nature of this work augments what is possible using traditional computing methods.

The groundbreaking research made possible through this partnership will see USask’s quantum scientists working together with many other scientists from diverse fields, further showcasing the interdisciplinary work currently underway at USask.

“Over the past 60 years or so, computers have become one of the most important tools in a scientist’s back pocket, on par with the microscope. But the time has come where ordinary computing can no longer keep up with the problems that society needs to solve today, such as climate change and accelerated vaccine design,” said Dr. Steven Rayan, director of USask’s quanTA Centre and lead of USask’s Quantum Innovation Signature Area of Research. “While still in its infancy, quantum computing promises to be the next indispensable tool in science. Some of the first real-world use cases for this technology will be developed right here at USask, thanks to this one-of-a-kind partnership with IBM and PINQ² and owing to the strong interdisciplinary culture on our campus.”

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