Rigetti, a pioneer in full-stack quantum-classical computing, has launched its 32-qubit Aspen-series quantum computer in the UK. The new system, which is Rigetti’s first UK-based quantum computer, will be available to its UK partners over the cloud through Rigetti QCS.
By delivering this device, the group led by Rigetti Computing has succeeded in a key objective to hasten the commercialization of quantum computing in the UK. As part of this project, Rigetti is joined by Oxford Instruments, the University of Edinburgh, Phasecraft, and Standard Chartered Bank. The group will work to enhance practical applications in finance, materials simulation, and machine learning.
“We believe deploying our first UK-based quantum computer is a major step towards our vision to integrate QPUs into the fabric of the cloud,” said Chad Rigetti, founder and CEO of Rigetti Computing. “By enabling cloud access to our QPUs, we believe our UK partners and end users will be closer to unlocking the potential of quantum computing to address their most pressing problems and advance the UK’s vibrant quantum ecosystem.”
UK’s Position Globally in Quantum Computing
The consortium is backed by funding from the UK government’s Quantum Technologies Challenge, led by UK Research & Innovation.
“This is the first time that we have been able to democratize technology at the scale that we can now, and access to the cloud is truly a fundamental accelerator for quantum computing applications,” said Stuart Woods, Managing Director, Oxford Instruments NanoScience. “Rigetti’s 32-qubit Aspen-series system supports important financial modeling of applications such as option pricing with synthetic data encapsulating all possible scenarios in one learning exercise. Today’s announcement is truly a win for the UK’s position globally in quantum computing.”
“Switching on this Rigetti quantum computer marks an important milestone for this project and the UK,” said Ashley Montanaro, co-founder at Phasecraft. “We at Phasecraft are excited to expand our work with Rigetti and begin using this machine to test out our quantum algorithms for materials modeling. Working closely with cutting-edge quantum hardware is crucial for us to significantly reduce the timescale for quantum advantage in this critically important area.”
“The collaboration with Rigetti has been invaluable to our research activities in Edinburgh for developing realistic verifiable applications,” said Prof. Elham Kashefi, Director of Quantum Software team at University of Edinburgh and QCS Hub. “Having access to Rigetti’s platform, with the full support from Rigetti software and hardware team, is the only way forward to close the gap between algorithms and machines which is the key challenge currently facing our field. I’m truly excited that the UK system will be live providing further collaborative opportunities with other R&D teams in the UK to expand the quantum advantage exploration endeavor.”
“While quantum technology is maturing, Standard Chartered Bank is strategically upskilling their data science teams so that the Bank is future-proof and ready for the widespread benefits and disruption that quantum computing is set to bring,” said Elena Strbac, Global Head of Data Science Innovation at Standard Chartered Bank. “Standard Chartered and Rigetti are already experimenting with how quantum machine learning can improve volatility predictions in financial markets, and going forward are looking to explore large scale environmental, social and governance challenges. Ultimately, clients and footprint communities should benefit from the higher quality services and capabilities brought by quantum technology.”
“At the heart of this program is the development of truly transformational technology and we are delighted in the progress Rigetti is making,” said Roger McKinlay, Challenge Director Quantum Technologies for Innovate UK, part of UKRI. “Rigetti is not only developing its technology in close collaboration with several UK organizations but also building business relationships which are already forming a capable supply chain. The deployment of both this computer and its associated cloud-access marks this event as not only as a major development milestone but also another significant step towards the UK being quantum-ready.”