Experts Developed a Road-map for Quantum Computation at NASA's Workshop on Quantum Computing

  • By Burcu Ozden
  • 17 January 2018

What are the latest developments in quantum information science and computation?  

What are the current challenges in algorithms, hardware, and technology transition to engineering applications?

NASA brought word leading scientist and industry leaders come together at Quantum Computing workshop to answer these questions and discuss future of the Quantum Computers.  

PQI member Peyman Givi was one of the organizers of the event. Jeremy Levy represented PQI among many other experts from the world leading institutions, universities, Google, Microsoft, IBM  and government offices.

This workshop was held to accelerate technology transition towards outstanding engineering problems that are expected to be achievable using quantum computations in the coming decade. Experts discussed the ways of developing a roadmap for success towards solution strategies for engineering applications. These applications included computational materials research, computational fluid dynamics and aerothermodynamics, among others.

Workshop attendees talked about the latest advances in scalability, universal logic and error correction with the aim to understand the next set of challenges required to control quantum systems, measure their outputs, and preserve their properties from outside disturbances. Experts presented the challenges to transition the current state-of-the-art to large scale engineering and data science related problems. Discussions aimed toward technology transition focused on the following four areas:

  • Quantum algorithms
  • Quantum computing hardware
  • Manufacturing and control of quantum systems
  • Engineering applications

This workshop was especially important for NASA since High Performance Computing (HPC) is critical for accomplishing NASA missions. One of the objectives of this workshop was to learn about latest developments and challenges in quantum computing. In this workshop scientists answer the following questions:

•           Will quantum computing solve “MY” problem?
•           How fast quantum computing will be?

NASA representative’s presented the following topics,

  • Potential applications of quantum computing in NASA,
  • The overall major impacts of quantum computing, NASA’s quantum research approach,
  • Status of quantum algorithms,
  • Current NASA research in the area,
  • Near term applications of small scale quantum computing for quantum chemistry, technology development maps,

Scientists described what the quantum computer is and discussed what is so special about quantum world. They stated that three properties, superposition, entanglement, and decoherence of quantum computers (QC) make them more beneficial over classical computers. Ways of making QC and status of QCs were also discussed in this workshop.

Experts in this workshop believe that today basic science is established and say that current research should  focus on making computations robust and scalable through quantum error correction (QEC). They list systems engineering problems and need for basic science and innovation as current challenges in the area.  Furthermore the need for the right software to go with hardware were emphasized.

Some of the presentations included following topics;

  • Quantum annealing,
  • Qubits,
  • Nanoelectronics
  • Quantum computing experimentation.

It was one of a kind workshop were industry leaders revealed current status of quantum studies in their companies. Google representative talked about their  hardware plans. Experts from Microsoft presented their recent work on quantum algorithms.

Experts from the government offices was also in this workshop. Department of Energy Office (DOE) of Science’s contributions to Quantum Information and Science (QIS) were one of the main topics discussed. Officers emphasized the support of government on QIS and encouraged the scientist to keep the good work in this area.