Although the division is new, it actually has been ColdQuanta’s core business since they started and well before they decided to enter the quantum computing market. ColdQuanta has always offered a broad portfolio of quantum devices and machines for use in quantum systems and applications. These include such items as UHV glass cells, magneto-optical traps, cryogenic apparatus, high performance quantum based clocks, and other such items. Even today, the bulk of the company’s current revenue comes from these products with almost all of the sales today based upon various government programs. However, as the quantum technology sector continues to grow, there may be more opportunities in the coming years for ColdQuanta to sell these type of products and services to commercial companies. As they say, sometimes it is a better strategy to sell picks and shovels to the gold miners than to be a gold miner yourself.

So this announcement consolidates this activity within the new division. A key project the company announced for the QRaaS division is to provide key components for a custom ion trap system to Oak Ridge National Labs (ORNL) that will allow Oak Ridge to perform important research in this area. More specifically ColdQuanta will provide a macroscopic vacuum chamber with integrated electronics, active and passive vacuum pumping mechanisms, an atomic source, thermal links, a compact helical resonator, and trapping electronics that are all contained within the cryostation chamber. But this group is participating in several other programs including the DARPA Quantum Apertures program to improve the sensitivity and frequency agility for receiving radio frequency (RF) waveforms, the DARPA SAVaNT program  to push the performance limits of atomic vapors at room temperature, quantum atomic clocks and other programs.

It is interesting that the Oak Ridge programs is using an ion trap quantum technology while ColdQuanta’s internal quantum computing effort is based upon neutral atoms. However, the ColdQuanta team pointed out to us that many of the mechanical engineering pieces, such as vacuum and cryogenic apparatus are very similar and this enables ColdQuanta to leverage the research and IP developed originally for one of the applications for another project that may be much different.

For more about ColdQuanta announcement of this new division and their project with Oak Ridge National Labs you can view a news release they issued that’s available here.

October 19, 2021