Microsoft adds Pasqal’s neutral atom processors to Azure Quantum

Pasqal’s Fresnel quantum computer uses the company’s neutral atom technology. (Photo Pascale)

Microsoft’s Azure Quantum cloud service will add a brand new tool to its toolkit: Pasqal’s Neutral Atom Quantum Processing System.

When the French company’s system becomes available later this year, it will provide a different method of data processing than other methods offered through Azure Quantum.

“Running algorithms on Pasqal’s neutral atom hardware opens the door to unique capabilities that no other quantum system offers,” Pasqal CEO and Founder Georges-Olivier Reymond said today. in a press release.

Unlike the rigid one or zero approach of classical computing, quantum computing uses quantum bits, or qubits, which can essentially represent different states simultaneously until the results are read.

Theoretically, the quantum approach should be able to solve certain types of problems, such as network optimization, much faster than the classical approach. The technology could open up new frontiers in areas ranging from traffic planning to drug development to data encryption.

Azure Quantum – and other cloud-based services including Amazon Braket, IBM Quantum, D-Wave Leap, and Google Quantum AI – are already experimenting with hybrid quantum algorithms and eagerly awaiting the development of general-purpose quantum computing systems.

The two main development paths for quantum hardware involve superconducting circuits and ion traps. Pasqal takes a different approach, involving neutral atoms that are manipulated at room temperature with laser-powered optical “tweezers.”

The company has already released a line of neutral atom processing hardware called Fresnel, and it aims to bring a 1,000-qubit quantum processor to market by the end of 2023.

Pasqal’s clients include Johnson & Johnson, LG, Airbus and BMW Group. In January, the company announced a merger with Qu&Co, a developer of quantum algorithms and software. (Qu&Co is part of Amazon Braket’s quantum line.) More recently, Pasqal and Aramco announced that they would join forces to develop quantum computing applications for the energy industry.

Krysta Svore, Microsoft’s vice president for quantum software, said Pasqal’s neutral atom processors would be a “welcome addition” to the Azure Quantum ecosystem.

Pasqal is expected to provide Azure Quantum users with “new computing possibilities, including analog quantum computing, opening up new avenues for pursuing quantum impacts in the real world,” Svore said.

Pre-registration for early access to Pasqal’s quantum computers through Azure Quantum became available today. For more information on pre-registration, send an e-mail to [email protected]

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