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USask Partners With PINQ² to Access Canada’s Only IBM Quantum System One

University of Saskatachewan
University of Saskatachewan

Insider Brief

  • USask has partnered with PINQ² to provide access to Canada’s only IBM Quantum System One, enhancing quantum computing research and capabilities at the university.
  • The partnership’s initial project involves analyzing complex health data to potentially develop future preventatives and therapies for chronic diseases like juvenile arthritis.
  • The collaboration represents a significant advance in Canada’s quantum computing infrastructure, supporting  research across multiple scientific disciplines.

PRESS RELEASE — Scientists at USask are on the forefront of groundbreaking research thanks to a partnership with the PINQ² (Québec Digital and Quantum Innovation Platform), the sole administrator of Canada’s only IBM Quantum System One, a utility-scale quantum computer located at IBM’s research facility in Bromont, Quebec.

USask’s three-year agreement with PINQ² enables faculty and students affiliated with USask’s Centre for Quantum Topology and Its Applications (quanTA) to have access to the machine via PINQ²’s quantum computing platform. This collaboration significantly enhances the existing quantum computing research activities at USask.

IBM Quantum System One is powered by a 127-qubit processor, which has achieved utility-scale performance, a point at which quantum computers could serve as scientific tools to explore a new scale of problems that classical systems may never be able to solve. Under ideal circumstances, a qubit can be astoundingly powerful in comparison to the ordinary bits in conventional computers.

One of the partnership’s first projects will be a study of complex health data in children suffering from chronic diseases, including juvenile arthritis. Using patient-derived data, researchers will deploy quantum-enhanced data analysis and machine learning techniques to uncover and understand hidden factors that may lead to such diseases, leading potentially to future preventatives and therapies. The nature of this work augments what is possible using traditional computing methods.

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The groundbreaking research made possible through this partnership will see USask’s quantum scientists working together with many other scientists from diverse fields, further showcasing the interdisciplinary work currently underway at USask.

“Our government is supporting quantum computing capacity in Canada through this unique collaboration between USask and Quantum System One, the next-generation quantum computer at IBM’s research facility. Today’s investment gives USask access to that system and the computing power that will allow them to tackle difficult problems in key areas like health care, climate sciences, and beyond. This access will lead to exponential growth in research and development, while boosting innovation and further solidifying USask as a scientific centre of excellence.”– The Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan

“Over the past 60 years or so, computers have become one of the most important tools in a scientist’s back pocket, on par with the microscope. But the time has come where ordinary computing can no longer keep up with the problems that society needs to solve today, such as climate change and accelerated vaccine design. While still in its infancy, quantum computing promises to be the next indispensable tool in science. Some of the first real-world use cases for this technology will be developed right here at USask, thanks to this one-of-a-kind partnership with IBM and PINQ² and owing to the strong interdisciplinary culture on our campus.” -Dr. Steven Rayan, director of USask’s quanTA Centre and lead of USask’s Quantum Innovation Signature Area of Research.

“USask is a leader in quantum computing and this exciting new partnership allows us to further our influential work in the quantum ecosystem. We are committed to training the next generation of researchers, leaders and changemakers. Access to IBM Quantum System One will be a central component to recruit highly qualified students and build the skills of the next generation of quantum leaders.” -Baljit Singh, Vice President Research, USask

“We are delighted to collaborate with USask, granting their researchers access to one of the world’s most powerful quantum computers. This partnership promises groundbreaking research and innovation, and we eagerly anticipate the outcomes arising from this collaboration. Our mission is to facilitate accelerated digital transformation for organizations and empower individuals in utilizing the capabilities of quantum computing. This partnership exemplifies our commitment to achieving that goal.” — Éric Capelle, Managing Director, PINQ² (Québec Digital and Quantum Innovation Platform)

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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