Google held a Quantum Summer Symposium on July 22 and 23 of this year and discussed their activities to build a Quantum Computing Data Center, establish a Quantum Computing Service, develop a 1 million qubit processor, and research quantum computing applications.

Google described their plans to develop a 1 million physical qubit processor by 2029.  They indicated they have developed plans to develop this in a progressive fashion with milestones at 100, 1000, 10,000, and 100,000 qubits.  The 1 million qubit computer would consist of 100 tiled modules with each tile containing 100×100 qubits.  This processor is planned to use error correction using the surface code, although they also have side projects to investigate other forms of error correction to see if they may be superior.

Google also discussed the ongoing activities to construct a Google AI Quantum Data Center close to their current GQ1 research facility in Santa Barbara, California. This new facility, called GQ2, will be much larger and will house their upcoming Quantum Computing Service.  It will hold a variety of quantum computers ranging from 20 to 72 qubits.  Much like IBM’s quantum service, users will be able to develop programs and submit them to run on either Google’s high performance classical simulators or one of the quantum processors.  The classical simulations will run on special high memory classical computers on the Google Cloud that will support simulations of up to 38 qubits.  Google spent the first half of 2020 testing their systems internally and is now starting an early access program for a very small set of selected academic and other researchers.  It is anticipated that the Google Quantum Service will become available to a larger set of users in the first half of 2021.

Another interesting point raised was Google’s believe that they may be on the verge of implementing commercially or scientifically interesting NISQ applications in the near future that are beyond the reach of a classical machine.  Achieving this would go a step beyond Google quantum supremacy experiment of last year since that was a demonstration of a crafted problem solely designed to do something that a classical computer could not do without regard to whether the problem was commercially or scientifically relevant.

Google has posted videos of many of the talks including a proposal for Quantum Money from Professor Peter Shor and presentations on several application problems they are working on.  You can view the full playlist for the Quantum Summer Symposium here; you can view the discussion of Google’s overall plans including the 1 million qubit project you can view the video here; and for additional details on Google’s Quantum Computing Service you can view the video here.

September 4, 2020