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Quantum Machines Launches Universal Language for Quantum Computer Orchestration

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Tel Aviv-based startup Quantum Machines launched a new language for quantum orchestration, QUA, aiming to become the first standard universal language for quantum computers.

QUA's main goal is to allow researchers to intuitively program quantum computers, says the company, getting closer to their vision of quantum computing software abstraction layer. To this aim, QUA is qubit agnostic and supports all quantum processors. QUA programs are compiled to Quantum Machines Pulse Processor assembly language, and can be run with extremely low latencies and precision according to Quantum Machines.

From a semantic perspective, QUA is the first language to combine universal quantum operations at the pulse-level, together with universal classical operations, namely, Turing-complete classical processing, and comprehensive control-flow.

InfoQ has taken the chance to speak with Dr. Itamar Sivan, co-founder and CEO of Quantum Machines, to learn more about this new technology.

InfoQ: Could you briefly explain what differentiates Quantum Machines' platform from other quantum computing vendors?

Itamar Sivan: Many of the major players are involved with and continue meaningful and important research into the development of quantum processors, and exploring different hardware (Superconducting qubits, Trapped ions & atoms, NV Centers, Quantum Dots, and Topological Qubits). As a company, we are not focused on creating a better quantum processor, or improving bit count. Instead, we focus on a specific layer within the quantum stack to help orchestrate between classical processors and the quantum processor. We work with researchers and companies using any type of hardware to maximize the potential of their quantum processors and improve their capabilities. We call this layer quantum orchestration.

While the world of quantum computing has made considerable progress in recent years, it has yet to unlock its full potential. Moving forward into the quantum future that is promised to unleash immense computational power, and requires significant progress to be made on all layers of the quantum computer stack. However, current equipment and methods of quantum research and development are often slow and limited in nature. The challenge stems from the dramatic difference between classical and quantum computing: while the transistors in a classical computer are connected in specific ways in order to form the logic of the computer, the logic of a quantum processor is not contained within it. The logic for quantum computers is embedded into electromagnetic pulses that are then sent to the quantum processor via a classical processor.

Quantum Orchestration Platform (QOP) represents a new era of advanced quantum experimentation and solves the challenge of controlling and operating quantum processors with the most advanced capabilities, and at scale. It combines classical hardware that works across all quantum platforms with a compiler and a high-level intuitive software abstraction layer, QUA. This stack lets teams run even the most complex quantum experiments and algorithms with little effort. The platform entirely eliminates the need for development and low-level coding and allows for agility, programmability, efficiency, and true scalability without compromising on performance.

InfoQ: In what ways could QUA change the way quantum researchers, practitioners, and learners use quantum technologies?

Sivan: Today, in order to run any quantum experiment, research teams spend immense efforts and time just laying out the groundwork and configuring the process. They write complex low-level code, adapt their existing test equipment for quantum hardware, and synchronize multiple devices. At times, teams must even build their own classical hardware from scratch, only to repeat the entire painstaking process for the next experiment.

QUA is the first comprehensive and universal language for quantum computing which unifies universal quantum operations in their ‘raw’ format (pulse-level) with universal classical operations used in classical processing. QUA makes writing quantum programs as easy as writing pseudocode. It allows researchers to program experiments without the need to spend endless hours writing low-level code and enables users to code programs that are far beyond expression today, from complex AI-based multi-qubit calibrations to multi-qubit quantum-error-correction. Together with its dedicated compiler, QUA leads to speedups in orders of magnitude when it comes to programming and running quantum protocols, helping save resources, and reducing the downtime of these very expensive machines.

Moreover, since our system is platform-agnostic, QUA is built to work with all the varieties of quantum processors. In this way it can push the entire industry forward, bringing the future of truly useful quantum computing closer to the present.

InfoQ: What are in your view the next major milestones quantum tech will need to reach before it can be used to solve real problems?

Sivan: Quantum computing is probably the most challenging moonshot we as a society are occupied with and will require significant progress and breakthroughs in multiple layers of the quantum computing stack. These can be separated into two major ones - the quantum processor itself, and the stack above it which allows the realization of its potential. We anticipate that in a few years, quantum computing will reach a break-even point for particular algorithmic tasks leading to the true exponential growth of the field. At QM, we are working full-steam towards making this a reality as well as addressing the immense challenges that will follow, that is, the realization of fault-tolerant quantum computers, which is most certainly the holy grail of quantum computing: thousands of stable quantum bits which will unleash incredible computational power, far beyond anything we can perceive.

From an industry perspective, one of the most dramatic progress that happened recently in quantum computing is that companies that have previously set out to realize the quantum computing dream on their own, are further collaborating and uniting forces. The increasing adoption of the quantum orchestration platform on the one hand and the offering of quantum computers by companies like QCI, Honeywell, D-Wave, or Rigetti via other corporations’ cloud services, are just two realizations of this new paradigm.

QUA, which relies on Quantum Machines' proprietary compiler, XQP, is integrated in Quantum Machines Orchestration Platform.

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