On Thursday (20), IBM announced that it managed to reach a quantum volume of 64 units, double the capacity reached in January this year. To do this, the company used a full-stack approach to improve the use of its hardware, including its new 27-qubit processors.
Quantum volume (VQ) is a unit of measurement used to measure the relative computational power of a computer based on a quantum system. In 2017, the company achieved a VQ of 4 units, using a 5-qubit processor. Since then, she has managed to double her VQ as her systems have evolved.
Last year, the company reached a VQ of 16 units, which doubled earlier this year. Now, once again, IBM has managed to double its quantum volume capacity to 64 units.
Instead of betting on a new processor, IBM decided to invest in a full-stack approach, combining a series of new software and hardware techniques to extract the maximum capacity from one of its most recent 27-qubit systems.
The “quantum advantage”, the point at which certain information processing tasks can be performed more effectively or economically on a quantum computer compared to a classic computer, can only be achieved through improved quantum circuits, which are the blocks of building quantum applications.
In theory, quantum volume is the ability to use a quantum system to solve real-world problems in all areas of industry, government and research.
That is why, so important when investing in high performance hardware and software, is to discover new optimized ways of using the circuits of the quantum volume. In that sense, IBM’s full-stack approach was able to “offer an innovative way to develop hardware-driven applications, algorithms and circuits, all running on the industry’s largest and most powerful quantum hardware line,” said Jay Gambetta, vice president from IBM Quantum.