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Will quantum computing become the next space race?

a new report from IBM spells out the potential power of quantum computing.

Representation of data at the Design Museum. By Tim Sandle
Representation of data at the Design Museum. By Tim Sandle

A new report from IBM (“The Quantum Decade: A playbook for achieving awareness,

readiness, and advantage”) reveals that quantum computing with 1,000 qubits could be available by 2023, signifying that the global arms race for quantum technologies is more important than ever.

The potential power of quantum computing is connected to quantum mechanics, especially the concepts of interference and entanglement. The quantum realm concerns the physical properties of nature at the scale of atoms and subatomic particles.

With interference, this principle allows a quantum computer to cancel unwanted solutions and enhance correct solutions. With entanglement, this means the combined state of the qubits contains more information than the qubits do independently.

The types of applications for future state quantum computing include discovering new drugs, managing financial risk, and re-engineering supply chains. Those backing quantum computing hope that as the technology emerges it will accelerate solutions to increasingly complex societal, macroeconomic, and environmental problems on a global scale.

The current focus with IBM is with the integration of quantum computing, artificial intelligence, and classical computing into hybrid multicloud workflows, and to harness these so that businesses that opt in can create an advantage.

Commenting on the initiative for Digital Journal is Nir Minerbi, who is the CEO and co-founder at quantum software platform Classiq.

Minerbi agrees with the bold IBM prediction and explains that: “Quantum computing could certainly become a part of businesses’ day-to-day operations as soon as 2023. Additionally, quantum computers with 1000 qubits could open up uses that we cannot yet imagine today.”

Minerbi also identifies how quantum computing is set to become the next “space race” around the world.

Minerbi  explains that “Quantum is going mainstream, and governments believe that their countries can’t be left behind in this race.”

There are further possibilities to be realised as well. Minerbi  finds these to be: “If quantum computers can one day break cybersecurity encryption, expedite the discovery of new materials, optimize supply chain routes, and improve weather prediction, then countries that have mastered quantum will have a substantial technological edge over those that haven’t.”

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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