The UK’s Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and Atos yesterday announced a collaboration to deploy an Atos Quantum Learning Machine at STFC Hartree Center. It is noteworthy that Atos has chosen an appliance approach to delivering a complete quantum training environment. This contrasts with the prevailing approach by quantum tech providers to rely on web-delivered access to their simulators. This is the first AQLM deployment the UK.
Atos has accelerated its push into quantum technology over the past couple of years. It positions the AQLM as a complete appliance currently able to simulate 30-to-40 qubits and comprised of:
- A specific hardware infrastructure, with large in-memory capacity and – available soon – a dedicated hardware accelerator
- An extensible quantum circuit model (data representation model)
- A universal quantum assembly programming language (AQASM, Atos Quantum Assembly Language)
- A high-level quantum hybrid language, built on top of the popular Python language
Providing researchers with tools to become familiar quantum computing is a key thrust throughout the quantum computing landscape. Atos says, “AQASM is Atos implementation of the universal quantum software development language: QASM. Programs using AQASM can be used on the quantum simulator today, as well as on the physical quantum computers of tomorrow. AQASM is configurable; it has the ability to program new quantum gates or to mix existing gates. AQASM offers high-level wrappers for developers and accepts quantum programs from other frameworks thanks to a versatile software development kit.”
This latest collaboration builds on an established partnership between Atos and the Hartree Centre, which began with the UK’s first Bull Sequana X1000 supercomputer being hosted at the facility in 2017. The Hartree Centre, based at Daresbury Laboratory and part of the Sci-Tech Daresbury Campus in Cheshire, UK, also hosts the JADE national deep learning service.
Quoted in the official announcement, Alison Kennedy, director of the STFC Hartree Centre, said: “We’re thrilled to be enabling UK companies to explore and prepare for the future of quantum computing. This collaboration will build on our growing expertise in this exciting area of computing and result in more resilient technology solutions being developed for industry.”
Leigh Lapworth, head of computational sciences at Rolls-Royce, which will be one of the first organizations to use the quantum simulator, is also quoted: “The Quantum Learning Machine will provide a platform on which we can develop new quantum algorithms with potential impacts across our business. We have a long track-record of successful collaborations with the Hartree Centre and with the support of Atos we look forward to research that takes us in new and exciting directions.”
Link to press release: https://stfc.ukri.org/news/uk-will-have-simulation-capabilities-like-never-before-with-powerful-quantum-learning-machine/?utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=SocialSignIn&utm_content=STFC+-+press+and+media+stories
Image source: Atos