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May 17, 2020

DARPA Kicks Off Program to Advance Quantum Computing

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

DARPA has selected seven university and industry teams for the first phase of the Optimization with Noisy Intermediate-Scale Quantum devices (ONISQ) program. Phase 1 of the program began in March and will last 18 months.

ONISQ aims to exploit quantum information processing before universal fault-tolerant quantum computers are realized, which isn’t expected for many years. The program is pursuing a hybrid concept that combines intermediate-sized quantum devices (hundreds to thousands of quantum bits, or qubits) with classical computing systems to solve a particularly challenging set of problems known as combinatorial optimization.

ONISQ seeks to demonstrate a quantitative advantage of quantum information processing by leapfrogging the performance of classical-only systems in solving optimization challenges. If successful, ONISQ could be applied to optimization problems of interest to defense and commercial industry, such as global logistics management, electronics manufacturing, and protein-folding.

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