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TCG research institute kicks off process for building quantum computer

The building of the quantum computer was underway at TCG CREST, Kolkata, in consultation with the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai

Quantum computers

Ishita Ayan Dutt Kolkata

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The Centre for Quantum Engineering, Research and Education (CQuERE), a vertical of TCG Centres for Research and Education in Science and Technology (TCG CREST), is in the process of building a superconducting qubits quantum computer. 

The building of the quantum computer was underway at TCG CREST, Kolkata, in consultation with the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai. TCG CREST is a research institute funded by The Chatterjee Group.

For the computer, the dilution refrigerator, a key component would be installed next week. With this, the highly complex task of setting up a superconductivity qubits based quantum computer, in collaboration with TIFR, Mumbai, would take off now, CQuERE said.

The first qubit would be procured from TIFR while research for adding more qubits would go on, Bhupendra Nath Dev, professor, CQuERE, said. 

“We are going to learn how to develop qubits,” Dev explained. CQuERE is aiming for 4 qubits which could take about three years to build and may cost around Rs 100 crore; the investment in 1 qubit could be to the tune of Rs 10-15 crore.

The work in the field of quantum algorithm and computing research at CQuERE had been going on for the past few years. The institute had also received funding from the central government to use two quantum computers in North America.

Once the in-house capacity expands, CREST would be the first privately funded research institute in India to have gone completely self-reliant in quantum computing, it said.

In another development, CQuERE would collaborate with a Spanish startup Qilimanjaro to set up a special kind of quantum computer known as the quantum annealer for stimulating the properties of molecules with real-world applications in industries from chemicals and petrochemicals to drugs.

This requires a lot of computation but a quantum computer would collapse the process in terms of time, CQuERE officials explained.

Quantum computers are known to outperform classical computers for certain problems by far. The work with Qilimanjaro would be funded by a grant from the European Commission and would also support a PhD scholar from CQuERE.

Bhanu Pratap Das, director, CQuERE, said that talks were also on with universities in the US and Japan for collaboration.

The current focus of CQuERE is theoretical and experimental quantum computing. Advances had also been made in new materials for qubits and work on quantum sensing and quantum communication was getting off the ground, CQuERE informed.

The areas were also the four domains of the National Quantum Mission recently cleared by the Union Cabinet. The NQM involves a cost of Rs 6,003.65 crore from 2023-24 to 2030-31.

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First Published: Apr 27 2023 | 11:56 PM IST

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