January 28, 2023

UC Santa Barbara/Google: Demonstration of the power of 53 qubits

Researchers at Google and UC Santa Barbara have made good on their claim to quantum supremacy. Using 53 entangled qubits, their Sycamore computer has taken on and solved a problem considered intractable for classical computers. Does they achieve Quantum Supremacy? Google thinks so, IBM does not. Make your own opinion by reading further.

A computation that would take 10,000 years on a classical supercomputer took 200 seconds on our quantum computer,” said Brooks Foxen, a graduate student researcher in the Martinis Group. “It is likely that the classical simulation time, currently estimated at 10,000 years, will be reduced by improved classical hardware and algorithms, but, since we are currently 1.5 trillion times faster, we feel comfortable laying claim to this achievement.

The milestone comes after roughly two decades of quantum computing research conducted by Martinis and his group, from the development of a single superconducting qubit to systems including architectures of 72 and, with Sycamore, 54 qubits (one didn’t perform) that take advantage of the both awe-inspiring and bizarre properties of quantum mechanics.

The feat is outlined in a paper in the journal Nature. (UC Santa Barbara)

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