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November 2018

Quantum computers are capable of solving complex problems, will require millions of quantum bits – or qubits – connected in an integrated way. An Australian research team has experimentally developed a combination of these capabilities on a silicon chip, bringing the dream of a universal quantum computer closer to reality. The new integrated design can be manufactured using well-established technology used in the existing computer industry. The researchers have published a design for a novel chip architecture that could allow quantum calculations to be performed using silicon CMOS (complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor) components – the basis of all modern computer chips. Possible applications include software design, machine learning, scheduling and logistical planning, financial analysis, stock market modelling, software and hardware verification, climate modelling, rapid drug design and testing, and early disease detection and prevention.