Companies join forces to create leading-edge trapped-ion quantum processors


07.12.2022 | Infineon | new technologies

Infineon Technologies AG and Oxford Ionics are collaborating to build high-performance and fully integrated quantum processing units (QPUs). The combination of Oxford Ionics’ unique electronic qubit control (EQC) technology with Infineon’s engineering and manufacturing capabilities and expertise in quantum technology lays the foundation for the industrial production of QPUs that will provide hundreds of qubits within the next five years . The aim is to transfer quantum computer technology from the research laboratory into real industrial solutions.

Quantum computing opens the next frontier in computing power for many industries looking to radically improve their processes and capabilities. To get there, qubit technologies must be developed that can be constructed at scale while controlling a growing set of qubits and keeping quantum error levels at and below the current state of the art. EQC technology provides a path to integrate trapped ion qubits – the leading qubit technology by quantum error levels – into Infineon’s mature semiconductor processes.

“The big challenge in quantum computing is how to scale while increasing performance,” said Chris Ballance, co-founder of Oxford Ionics. “There are technologies that can be manufactured at scale but don’t perform, and there are technologies that work but don’t scale. Our electronic controls are uniquely positioned to do both. Working with Infineon and its mature and flexible semiconductor process allows us to accelerate the availability of a commercial QPU. Because of our market-leading error rates, these processors require significantly fewer qubits to solve useful problems than other technologies.”

The first devices will be cloud-accessible by the end of 2022, giving commercial players access to these state-of-the-art quantum computers. Fully integrated devices with high enough power to scale to hundreds of qubits are expected to be available in less than two years. The companies’ ultimate goal is to provide, within five years, single, fully integrated QPUs that deliver hundreds of qubits networked into a quantum supercomputing cluster using Oxford Ionics’ quantum network technology.

“Infineon’s role is to leverage the pioneering work of Oxford Ionics to achieve the right scaling towards meaningful qubit counts and low error rates. Infineon’s ion traps, coupled with our predictable, repeatable, and reliable manufacturing and assembly capabilities, can make this possible,” said Stephan Schaecher, Director of New Application, Innovation, and Quantum Computing at Infineon Technologies Industrial Division.


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