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Microsoft and Quantinuum claim 'breakthrough' in quantum computing - 14k error-free experiments

Microsoft and Quantinuum claim 'breakthrough' in quantum computing - 14k error-free experiments
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Quantum computers could make real scientific calculations that would take ordinary machines millions of years. At the same time, the fundamental unit of quantum computers - the so-called "qubit" - though fast, is very demanding.

Qubits are easily disturbed, making them prone to errors: about 1 out of 1000 qubits fail, compared to 1 out of 1 billion bits in regular computers. To address this issue, quantum researchers often create more physical qubits than necessary and use error correction methods.

Microsoft and Quantinuum have announced a breakthrough in this area. As Reuters reports, Microsoft has developed and applied its own error correction algorithm to the Quantinuum physical qubits, forming 4 reliable qubits out of a total of 30 physical qubits. Microsoft's Executive Vice President for Strategic Missions and Technologies, Jason Zander, stated that this is the best ratio of reliable qubits from a quantum chip ever demonstrated:

"We conducted over 14,000 individual experiments without a single error. This is 800 times better than anything previously recorded."

Microsoft stated that they plan to release this technology for their cloud computing clients in the coming months.

Quantinuum researchers, like their competitors, often refer to the figure of 100 reliable qubits as necessary to "beat" a regular supercomputer. However, neither Microsoft nor Quantinuum specified how long it would take to achieve this goal.

"Right now, we have accelerated at least by two years, if not more," said Quantinuum's Product Director, Ilyas Khan.

Meanwhile, the competitive QuEra announced that they will launch the world's first fault-tolerant quantum computer for sale in 2024, and a 10,000-qubit one in two years.

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