Quantum computing is coming, but how to get it on to your desktop and working in your everyday life is still a while away. What has been a problem is getting the quantum chips working in conjunction with the classical chips. Something that the University of New South Wales (UNSW) has figured out is how to make an architecture that integrates the new chips with classical chips. This quantum-based processor is designed using a silicon-based quantum computer processor based on complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) technology.
The chase for quantum computing
Currently, many companies, such as Google, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, and governments have been researching how to get the next generation of computing up and running. Primarily, a quantum processor will be able to solve problems a lot quicker than is currently possible. A problem with getting these computers into your home is the need for extreme cooling or advanced lasers. Cooling and lasers are needed for the processor to maintain qubit coherence.
On their own, these computers are not much good. There is a need to connect them to a classical processor. In the end, a quantum processor will work similarly as a GPU – As an add-on to add to processing speed and computing potential. Don’t expect this computing to be that fantastic straight away, as for the moment there will only be accessible to hundreds of qubits before the technology gets to a high point of millions of qubits.
To put qubits into perspective, using hundreds of qubits would not be able to simulate the human body at the scale of an atom. Instead, it would take millions of qubits.
Coming to your home soon?
The chip will be built on 7nm process technologies, and smaller transistors will improve the potential of 7nm processor capabilities. This technology is what is likely to be put into quantum computing on your home PC. To achieve the architecture, researchers will use error-correction code, something that uses multiple real qubits to create one “logical qubit.” UNSW is the first to be able to develop a method of producing an error-correcting code that will be able to processes millions of qubits in the future.
For the foreseeable future, the next step in computing is only going to be used for commercial uses in data centers with cloud access. Google and IBM are designing quantum computers above and beyond what UNSW is doing, but this research is more likely to end up on your desk at home.