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Startup QuiX secured an order to build a photonic universal quantum computer for DLR, a German aerospace institute. The startup is en route to becoming the world’s first company to sell such a supercomputer.

The startup was founded in the Netherlands and develops quantum computing technology based on light particles (photons). The advantage of the approach is that it doesn’t require extremely cold temperatures (-296 degrees Celsius) to create quantum particles. According to QuiX, this makes quantum technology extremely scalable. The disadvantage is that photon-based quantum computing is highly specialized and complex.

QuiX recently secured an order worth €14 million from the DLR, a German aerospace institute. QuiX will build a photonic universal quantum computer in collaboration with the DLR. The German government tasked the DLR with developing national quantum technology. The institute set up the DLR Quantum Computing Initiative for this purpose.

Bundling of technology

QuiX and the DLR will pool their knowledge of quantum technology and jointly build a prototype for a universal photonic quantum computer.

QuiX will provide a non-universal quantum computing platform that runs the Boson Sampler quantum computer. The basis of this platform consists of the Quox Quantum Photonic Processor, in the form of a reprogrammable interferometer.

The DLR will provide knowledge in areas like post-quantum cryptography, quantum machine learning, satellite operations optimization and the simulation of chemical redox reactions for battery system development.

Less investment capital required

If everything goes according to plan, QuiX may well become the world’s first company to sell a photonic universal quantum computer to a customer. Dutch media report that the company has a steady stream of funding as a result. QuiX has a new round of investments planned for late 2023 or early 2024. The startup raised 5.5 million in a round last summer.

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