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Plenty of chips? European boost to the computing sector

The funding includes investment in quantum technologies, which leverages the behaviors of sub-atomic particles.

European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde has insisted that inflation pressure is only "transitory" - Copyright GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP/File SPENCER PLATT
European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde has insisted that inflation pressure is only "transitory" - Copyright GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP/File SPENCER PLATT

To address the shortfall of computer chips, and to encourage future applications and developments, the new European Chips Act sets out to overcome its dependency on Asian computer chip. The Act sees an investment of some $48 million to go into a series of different projects designed to strengthen chip supply.

The measures will also bring an additional $17 billion of investments into chip production to avoid further supply chain disruptions.

According to The Guardian, European commission president Ursula von der Leyen said: “Chips are at the centre of the global technological race. They are, of course, also the bedrock of our modern economies…The pandemic has also painfully exposed the vulnerability of its supply chains,” von der Leyen said. “We have seen that whole production lines came to a standstill. While the demand was increasing, we could not deliver as needed because of the lack of chips.”

The funding includes investment in quantum technologies, which leverages the behaviors of sub-atomic particles that experts say will one day conduct computations far beyond the reach of today’s most powerful computers.

Considering the impact for Digital Journal is Mark Mattingley-Scott, managing director EMEA for Quantum Brilliance (a company that seeks to miniaturize quantum computers for desktop and mobile applications).

Mattingley-Scott’s main interest is with the significance of the Act for the quantum computing industry and what this means for the future of the development of quantum technologies.

Mattingley-Scott welcomes the central thrust of the Act, noting: “The European Chips Act will allocate funding for quantum technologies, which leverage the behaviors of sub-atomic particles to one day conduct computations far beyond the reach of today’s most powerful computers.”

He also ascertains that: “The Act will accelerate the momentum for the quantum technology industry in Europe, including the development of silicon and diamond-based quantum technologies, which include quantum processors that work at room temperature in small form factors that will see a variety of applications.”

In terms of how things may work in practice, Mattingley-Scott turns his attention to one of the most powerful states within the European Union: “Germany has already made significant contributions to this momentum by supporting a $22.5 million research project led by Quantum Brilliance to fabricate diamond-based quantum microprocessors.”

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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