14. September 2021

DL­R­magazine 168 – Qubits hit the ground run­ning

Research initiative for quantum computing
Re­search ini­tia­tive for quan­tum com­put­ing
Credit: DLR (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)

Research initiative for quantum computing

A chip can be the heart of a quan­tum com­put­er. Atoms or ions can be sep­a­rate­ly trapped on it. These can serve as in­for­ma­tion car­ri­ers, so-called qubits or quan­tum bits. Quan­tum com­put­ers have the po­ten­tial to solve prob­lems that would push to­day's com­put­ers be­yond their lim­its. With­in the next four years, DLR, to­geth­er with part­ners from in­dus­try, small and medi­um-sized en­ter­pris­es, start-ups and sci­ence, will es­tab­lish two con­sor­tia to cre­ate the frame­work for a Ger­man quan­tum com­put­er as well as de­vel­op the cor­re­spond­ing soft­ware and iden­ti­fy quan­tum-spe­cif­ic ap­pli­ca­tions.

A chip can be the heart of a quantum computer. Atoms or ions can be separately trapped on it. These can serve as information carriers, so-called qubits or quantum bits. Quantum computing is expected to open up new opportunities in materials research, medicine and the energy and transport sectors. It is also expected to revolutionise artificial intelligence, interception-proof cryptography techniques and satellite-based communications and navigation. Sounds promising! The latest issue of the DLRmagazine provides insights into this new world and introduces the DLR Quantum Computing Initiative, where research institutions, industry and start-ups are jointly developing hardware, software and applications.

ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer will soon be venturing into another world. He will fly to the International Space Station ISS for the first time at the end of October. There, as part of his Cosmic Kiss mission, he will conduct various scientific experiments for about six months. Before embarking on his mission, he answered a few questions. But it is not just the crew on board the Dragon capsule that will be heading into space: In October, NASA's Lucy spacecraft will embark on its own journey. Its destination is the Trojan asteroids of Jupiter. Researchers hope to find clues there as to how the outer planets of the Solar System could have formed. It will be an eventful autumn.

A lot is also happening at DLR on Earth. For example, an energy research farm is being built in Krummendeich on the Elbe for testing wind turbines, the DLR Institute of Solar Research is celebrating its tenth anniversary, researchers are investigating how road, rail, airborne and seaborne vehicles can communicate better with each other, and our newest member of the DLR research aircraft fleet, ISTAR, has passed its first tests. Read about this and much more in the latest issue of the DLRmagazine.

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  • Julia Heil
    Ger­man Aerospace Cen­ter (DLR)

    Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and Me­dia Re­la­tions
    Telephone: +49 2203 601-5263
    Linder Höhe
    51147 Cologne
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