COLORADO SPRINGS – Quantum Brilliance, an Australian and German quantum computing startup, is striving to identify space-based applications for its technology.
“I’m here because I’m very interested in speaking to many potential customers about feasibility studies,” said Mark Mattingley-Scott, managing director of Quantum Brilliance for Europe, Middle East and Africa SpaceNews at the space symposium. “We really want to go into space as soon as possible.”
Last year, Quantum Brilliance delivered its first quantum computer to the government-funded Pawsey Supercomputing Center in Western Australia. While this first product is about half a meter wide and fits in a standard server rack, the company is working on smaller models.
“We plan to scale that down to a lunchbox size that uses a few hundred watts over the next few years,” said Mattingley-Scott, who spent nearly 32 years at IBM before joining Quantum Brilliance last year. “This is a very interesting payload for a satellite in space.”
Most quantum computing technologies require extremely low temperatures. Quantum Brilliance works with synthetic diamonds to create quantum computers that operate at room temperature.
Quantum computing technology is evolving rapidly, but most quantum computers remain extremely large.
Quantum Brilliance is working on the development of quantum computers that can outperform traditional microprocessors such as GPUs for the same size, weight and performance.
“We were pretty confident that we could achieve quantum utility against GPU in the next three years,” Mattingley-Scott said. “These are the kind of timescales where you need to start doing things now to make room.”
In general, quantum computers are good at solving extremely complex and multi-layered problems.
For example, quantum computers “could offer much more accuracy, but also more speed in optimizing machine learning, pattern recognition, and labeling problems,” Mattingley-Scott said.
Still, it is impossible to envision all potential applications for quantum computing today, just as it was impossible to outline future applications for early integrated circuits.
Quantum Brilliance, founded in Australia in 2019, established a German subsidiary last year.
The company’s German subsidiary is working with the University of Ulm on a €15.6 million ($17.1 million) research project funded by the German government and led by the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Solid State Physics. The three-year project, announced in January, focuses on scalable synthetic diamond-based quantum microprocessor technology.