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LANL to Acquire Next-Gen D-Wave Quantum Computer with Lower Noise

Today D-Wave Systems announced that Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) has signed a contract to upgrade to the company’s next-generation “Advantage” quantum system. Available in 2020, the Advantage platform will deliver significant performance gains and greater solution precision.

Quantum computing is only as valuable as the applications customers can run,” said Alan Baratz, chief product officer, D-Wave. “With the Advantage quantum system, we are building the first ever quantum computer designed to deliver business benefit. Our investments across our quantum platform, which includes the Leap quantum cloud service, the Advantage quantum system, and the Ocean developer tools, will together allow customers to solve even more complex problems at greater scale and bring emerging quantum and hybrid applications to life. Our ongoing efforts to further productize and commercialize our quantum platform are good for the growing ecosystem, good for the quantum computing market, and most importantly, good for our customers, who are building the first commercial quantum applications.”

LANL is a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science to address national security priorities. To-date, LANL and its collaborators have built over 60 early quantum applications and conducted essential research in a diverse range of domains. The Advantage quantum system will help fuel this work by providing access to a processor with the new, highly connected Pegasus topology, lower noise, and increased qubit count, which will benefit from the expanded hybrid software and tools available in Leap’s Ocean SDK.

This is the third time we will have upgraded our D-Wave system. Each upgrade has enabled new research into developing quantum algorithms and new tools in support of Los Alamos’ national security mission,” said Irene Qualters, associate laboratory director for simulation and computation at Los Alamos National Laboratory. “Quantum computing is a critical area of research for Los Alamos, and our researchers are excited about getting access to D-Wave’s Advantage quantum system.” 

Continuing Quantum Innovation

Since announcing the roadmap for the Advantage quantum system in February 2019, D-Wave has rolled out hardware and software innovations, including access through Leap to a lower-noise D-Wave 2000Q processor and the Hybrid open-source workflow platform.

To further demonstrate the benefits of the new lower-noise design in the Advantage quantum system, D-Wave has published two white papers describing clear improvements in performance of the lower-noise 2000Q processor, compared to the previous 2000Q system. The lower-noise processor, which was made available to customers via Leap in May, shows improved precision and better tunneling, which produces better-quality solutions and can lead to significant speedups on problems of interest to quantum application developers. 

Customers like CogniFrame, a financial services company that develops hybrid optimization solutions to help banks improve their return on assets, see the early benefits of the technology innovations in the Advantage quantum system:

CogniFrame’s financial services operating system built on top of D-Wave’s quantum systems helps solve “intractable” and computationally intensive non-convex and stochastic optimization problems for financial institutions, thus improving their return on assets. Our hybrid optimization solution helps banks arrive at the optimal composition of capital and assets while reducing costs, enhancing returns, and maintaining an appropriate risk level. We work closely with D-Wave to more quickly build and run optimization algorithms across hybrid classical and quantum systems,” said Vish R, CogniFrame chief executive officer and founder. “Just like D-Wave, our objective is driving value for our customers. Multiple financial use-cases have been identified, including asset-liability management, collateral optimization, and portfolio optimization for different regulatory requirements. D-Wave is helping us make that a reality.” 

These announcements come during D-Wave’s semi-annual users’ conference, Qubits, hosted this week in Newport, RI. The gathering brings quantum pioneers, early enterprise adopters, and developers together to discuss new early applications, built using D-Wave’s quantum systems. Participants represent industries spanning transportation, healthcare, manufacturing, finance, telecommunications, and more. Attendees from around the world – private and public companies, government organizations, leading universities in the U.S. and Japan, and research firms – include GE Research, Accenture, Booz Allen Hamilton, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, SAIC, Oki Electric Industry Co. Ltd., and many more.

Over two dozen speakers from the user community are on the agenda, presenting their work on quantum applications and tools.

Selected talks at the conference:

  • Implementing Quantum Applications in Financial Institutions
  • Practical Usage of Quantum Annealing in Industrial Applications
  • Computing Protein Binding using Quantum Annealing
  • Delivering Value with Quantum Computing: Kidney Exchange Network

The new applications add to the more than 150 existing early customer-developed applications in areas as diverse as financial modeling, airline scheduling, election modeling, quantum chemistry simulation, automotive design, preventative healthcare, logistics, and more. Many users have also developed software tools that simplify application development. These existing applications and tools, and the vibrant user community, give developers a wealth of examples to learn from and build upon. The delivery of the Advantage quantum system will expand the variety, performance, precision, and breadth of quantum applications.

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