IBM has a goal to develop a 100,000 qubit Quantum-centric Supercomputer by 2023. Although they have made great progress since their initial introduction of a 5 qubit machine in 2016, they have concluded that there are four critical areas that still needs significant development to achieve this goal. These areas include quantum communication, quantum middleware, quantum algorithms & error correction, and components with the necessary supply chain.

A visual rendering of IBM Quantum’s 100,000-qubit quantum-centric supercomputer, expected to be deployed by 2033. (Credit: IBM)

To accelerate the progress in developing technologies in these four areas, IBM has enlisted the help of research teams at the University of Chicago and the University of Tokyo and will be providing funding to these universities totaling $100 million over a 10 year period. The University of Tokyo will be working on developing improved algorithms and applications and supply chain issues while the University of Chicago will be working on quantum communication, quantum middleware, and error resilience issues.

The announcement of this funding was made at the G-7 meeting in Hiroshima, Japan on May 21, 2023 alongside another announcement from Google of $50 million funding fot the University of Tokyo and the University of Chicago. Additional information about this announcement can be see in a press release provided by IBM here, a blog from IBM describing the technical challenges of a 100,000 qubit processor here, a YouTube video here, and an associated press release from the University of Chicago here.

May 23, 2023