Do Quantum Computers Have the Potential to Become Valuable Instruments in 2022
A SUPERIOR quantum computer might break encryption and tackle issues that classical computers couldn’t. Despite the fact that no one has yet to develop such a gadget, progress has recently accelerated — may 2022 be the year?
Efforts are currently focused on achieving quantum supremacy, which is the point at which a quantum computer can execute a calculation that a classical computer cannot in an acceptable amount of time.
In 2019, Google made a quantum computer breakthrough. The German Museum received this processor as the world’s first museum. Google was the first to achieve this goal in 2019, utilizing a gadget with 54 qubits, the quantum counterpart of ordinary computer bits, to do a random sampling calculation, which is practically meaningless.
A team from China’s University of Science and Technology solved a more complex sampling problem with 56 qubits in 2021 and then went further with 60 qubits in 2022.
However, IBM’s Bob Sutor believes that this game of leapfrog is primarily an academic achievement that has yet to have a significant influence. True supremacy will only be attained when a quantum computer outperforms classical computers and can solve various problems, rather than the random sampling calculations that are now employed as benchmarks. According to him, IBM aims to achieve “quantum commercial advantage,” or the point at which a quantum computer can solve practical issues for researchers or businesses much faster than traditional computers.
According to Sutor, this hasn’t arrived yet and won’t till 2022, but it’ll be here within the decade. More bullish is Nir Minerbi, co-founder of quantum software firm Classiq. He predicts that proof of quantum supremacy in a relevant problem will occur in 2022.
“Do you recall when the first electric automobiles were released? They were convenient for going to the store, but not so much for driving 300 miles to drop your child off at college. Quantum computers, like electric automobiles, will improve over time, making them usable in a broader range of applications,” he argues.
Solving practical problems has a lot of stumbling blocks. The first is that devices will require thousands more qubits, which must be more robust and trustworthy than current ones.
To work as a single “logical qubit,” researchers will most likely need to arrange them together in clumps. This improves fidelity, but it eats into scale gains: hundreds of logical qubits may require millions of physical qubits.
“Over time, quantum computers will improve and become useful in a variety of applications.”
Researchers are also developing quantum error correction to rectify errors as they arise.
In July 2021, Google revealed that its Sycamore processor could detect and correct faults in superconducting qubits, although the additional hardware required to do so caused more errors than it corrected. With their trapped-ion qubits, researchers at the Joint Quantum Institute in Maryland were able to break beyond that vital break-even point.
Even yet, it’s still early.
It would be “quite stunning,” according to Scott Aaronson of the University of Texas at Austin if a general-purpose quantum computer solved a significant problem in 2022.
“Error correction is just getting started, and we don’t appear to be anywhere near being able to protect a single encoded qubit for an arbitrary amount of time, let alone executing not to mention performing computations on large numbers of encoded qubits.,” he says.