Startup News & Analysis

Quantum computing startup Q-CTRL chosen by IBM to join global quantum computing network

Dominic Powell /


Q-CTRL founder Michael Biercuk. Source: Supplied.

An Australian startup working in the rapidly emerging quantum computing space has won the accolade of being the only company outside of the US and Canada to be picked by computing giant IBM’s for its Q Network.

Q-CTRL will now be part of a global network of companies and organisations, which are given access to IBM’s quantum computing systems and which collaborate together on building the technology.

The startup was founded by University of Sydney professor Michael Biercuk, and operates as a way to “essentially improve the overall performance of the quantum algorithm” according to the founder. It does this by offering a cloud-based software solution designed to work with any quantum computer, which extracts more performance from quantum devices and combats decoherence.

Decoherence occurs where transferred quantum information gets lost or degraded when the quantum system is not perfectly isolated, leading to lost “quantum behaviour”.

The startup was backed by CSIRO’s Main Sequence Ventures last year alongside three other “deep tech” companies, but the amount invested was not disclosed. In a statement, Biercuk said the startup’s inclusion in IBM’s Q Network will likely lay the groundwork for a long-term partnership between the two companies.

“Working with IBM is a logical step for Q-CTRL to develop real solutions to one of the hardest problems in quantum computing — dealing with hardware error. Backed by our partners Main Sequence Ventures and Horizons Ventures, Q-CTRL is focused on transitioning years of fundamental research to commercial-scale technology for the global quantum economy,” he said.

Alongside the tech giant’s groundbreaking quantum technology and systems, Q-CTRL will also be given access to a network of researchers and tech companies, such as JP Morgan, Samsung, and Oxford University.

“As IBM continues to scale-up its quantum computers, we will gain direct access to the company’s most advanced devices and have an opportunity to help solve some of quantum computing’s most vexing challenges,” Biercuk said.

“Our techniques are already validated through our academic ion-trapping laboratory. Working with IBM gives us a new opportunity to test these concepts on a totally different kind of quantum computing hardware.”’

NOW READ: A century-defining technology: What is quantum computing, and where are the opportunities for entrepreneurs?

Dominic Powell

Dominic Powell is the lead reporter at StartupSmart.

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