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Waseda University Ventures Invests in Japanese Quantum Computer Hardware Startup

Japan quantum startup

Waseda University Ventures — WUV — has made a founding investment of 200 million yen in Waseda University’s Nanofiber Quantum Technologies Co., Ltd., according to a news release translated from the Japanese original.

The release claims that this is Japan’s first gate-type quantum computer hardware development startup and the first project funded by the WUV Fund No. 1.

NanoQT is based on the nanofiber QED (quantum electrodynamics) resonator invented by Professor Takaro Aoki of Waseda University’s Faculty of Science and Engineering. The number of qubits that can currently be implemented in the research and development of quantum computers in the world is only a few bits to about 100 bits.

The team claims the device is capable of achieving approximately 10,000 qubits and could connect a large number of units to form a network, making it possible “to achieve an overwhelmingly large scale.”

NanoQT co-founders: Akihisa Goban CTO, Takao Aoki CSO, Masaru Hirose CEO
NanoQT co-founders: Akihisa Goban CTO, Takao Aoki CSO, Masaru Hirose CEO

Co-founders include:

  • Dr. Takao Aoki Co-founder & CSO (Chief Scientific Officer) : Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University. At the University of Tokyo, California Institute of Technology, and Kyoto University, he consistently engaged in quantum optics research with a view to its application to quantum technology, and created nanofiber resonator QED technology at Waseda University. He received a doctorate from the University of Tokyo.
  • Dr. Masaru Hirose Co-founder & CEO (Chief Executive Officer) : Engaged in management reform projects for global companies for about 7 years at the Japanese branch of McKinsey & Company. He holds a PhD in quantum physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He graduated from Keio University Faculty of Science and Technology.
  • Dr. Akihisa Goban Co-founder & CTO (Chief Technology Officer) : Leading the development of atomic quantum state control technology with Professor Aoki and its integration into nanofiber resonator QED. Engaged in quantum optics research at JILA at the University of Colorado Boulder. He received his Ph.D. from Caltech. He graduated from the Faculty of Science, the University of Tokyo.

The release states: “WUV is newly established with the aim of realizing a global impact from Japan by realizing the breakthrough science of Waseda University Professor Aoki, the world’s top-level co-founder team, and the realization of a unique nanofiber resonator QED method quantum computer. The 200 million yen founding investment in NanoQT, the first project of the WUV No. 1 Fund, brings together top researchers in the field of quantum science from all over the world to create a Japanese-made technology that surpasses existing superconducting methods and ion trap methods. We will continue to support the realization of a new type of quantum computer.”

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Matt Swayne

With a several-decades long background in journalism and communications, Matt Swayne has worked as a science communicator for an R1 university for more than 12 years, specializing in translating high tech and deep tech for the general audience. He has served as a writer, editor and analyst at The Quantum Insider since its inception. In addition to his service as a science communicator, Matt also develops courses to improve the media and communications skills of scientists and has taught courses. [email protected]

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