IBM Quantum Computer Goes Online at University

Partnership with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute aims to accelerate quantum computing research, workforce development and education.

Berenice Baker

April 9, 2024

2 Min Read
A photo of the utility-scale IBM Quantum System One, which was unveiled on April 5, 2024
IBM Quantum System One was unveiled on April 5, 2024Image: IBM

This article originally appeared in IoT World Today

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) and IBM have unveiled the world's first-ever IBM quantum computer on a university campus, six months after beginning installation.

The IBM System One came online in the surroundings of the university's historic Voorhees Computing Center Chapel as RPI celebrated its bicentenary.

Faculty, researchers, students and collaborators will be able to use the system to advance quantum computing research. The partners aim to develop quantum algorithms that could lead to quantum advantage while training the next generation of the quantum workforce.

RPI and IBM intend the new system to provide educational and research opportunities for the university and other academic institutions and organizations across the New York region.

“Standing at the forefront of quantum computing as the first university to host an IBM Quantum System One is a fitting celebration of RPI's pioneering legacy in our bicentennial year,” said RPI president Marty Schmidt.

“Our students are eager to explore quantum computing's applications in addressing our toughest challenges and I'm excited to witness the creativity of both our students and faculty researchers as they unlock quantum's potential to shape a better future.”

Related:Europe to Launch its First Exascale Supercomputer in 2024

The System One at RPI features a 127-qubit IBM Quantum Eagle. IBM describes it as a utility-scale quantum computer, meaning it can perform reliable computations at a scale beyond brute-force classical computing methods.

The new computer joins IBM’s fleet of quantum computers installed on client sites in the U.S., Canada, Germany and Japan. New installations are underway in South Korea and Spain.

“For the first time in history, an entirely new branch of computing is being developed with quantum technology. This is not something we can do alone,” said IBM senior vice president and director of research Dario Gil, who is also an RPI board member.

“It is fundamental that IBM works with our global ecosystem of partners, including world-renowned universities and research institutions such as RPI, to discover and map new algorithms to the most difficult challenges that quantum computers can solve. We will do this by fostering a quantum workforce of the future and ensuring that the next generation is equipped with the skills to use these systems to their fullest potential.”

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