Intel and QuTech Demonstrate Advances in Solving Quantum Interconnect Bottlenecks
What’s New: Today, Intel and QuTech – a collaboration between Delft University of Technology and the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research – published key findings in quantum research to address the “interconnect bottleneck” that exists between quantum chips that sit in cryogenic dilution refrigerators and the complex room-temperature electronics that control the qubits. The innovations were covered in Nature, the industry-leading science journal of peer-reviewed research, and mark an important milestone in addressing one of the biggest challenges to quantum scalability with Intel’s cryogenic controller chip Horse Ridge.
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A photo shows an Intel "Horse Ridge" chip mounted on a circuit board. Horse Ridge is a cryogenic control chip for qubits built using Intel’s 22nm FinFET Low Power technology. (Credit: Marieke de Lorijn)
“Our research results, driven in partnership with QuTech, quantitatively prove that our cryogenic controller, Horse Ridge, can achieve the same high-fidelity results as room-temperature electronics while controlling multiple silicon qubits. We also successfully demonstrated frequency multiplexing on two qubits using a single cable, which clears the way for simplifying the ‘wiring challenge’ in quantum computing. Together, these innovations pave the way for fully integrating quantum control chips with the quantum processor in the future, lifting a major roadblock in quantum scaling.”
--Stefano Pellerano, principal engineer at Intel Labs
Why It Matters: A key bottleneck for quantum computing lies between the quantum chip stored in low, cryogenic temperatures in dilution refrigerator and room-temperature control electronics that control the qubits. Getting the control electronics to operate at high fidelity at cryogenic temperatures is key to overcoming what is referred to as the “interconnect or wiring bottleneck.” Intel took the first step to address this challenge when it introduced Horse Ridge, a cryogenic control chip for qubits built using Intel’s 22nm FinFET Low Power technology. A second generation of the chip was introduced last year. Horse Ridge brings key control functions for quantum computer operation into the cryogenic refrigerator – as close as possible to the qubits themselves – to streamline the complexity of control wiring for quantum systems.