Espace Presse – Acceleration of research at CEA on quantum technologies

The announcement of the quantum plan is an opportunity to take stock of the quantum technologies under development at CEA. In fact, this plan, in particular through its Priority Research Program and Equipment (PEPR), is funded by the 4th The Future Investments Program (PIA) will support and develop the public body’s research in quantum science.

> quantum computer;

The prospect of a very high-performance industrial-class computer is an important issue because of its disruptive potential for our information society. Achieving the required performance and reliability requires building systems that connect the millions of quantum bits (qubits) needed for high-performance quantum computing, including error correction.

Several research and development paths are under way in the framework of CEA-CNRS-Inria-University partnerships, which PEPR will accelerate and consolidate:

  • silicon qubits’ path based on microelectronics technologies and the semiconductor industry. The Grenoble ecosystem, made up of a mixed team between CEA, CNRS and the University of Grenoble-Alpes, focused on this outlook. The goal is to be the first to connect 100 silicon qubits, while predicting the upscaling towards a faulty-corrected universal quantum coprocessor that is more efficient than a conventional computer by 2030;
  • at the same time, the quantum society Paris-Saclay and Grenoble are exploring other ways and new concepts to develop qubits that are more robust than all current technologies and thus change the paradigm of error correction;
  • The CEA, particularly in its Paris-Saclay center, also intends to contribute to the study of the software stack and the architectures that will allow the programming and execution of realistic applications on the future quantum computer.
Low temperature silicon - Copie.jpg

Study at very low temperature of silicon circuits manufactured by CEA-Leti. Collection of silicon chips on their sample holder that can be used at very low temperatures – © D. Guillaudin / CEA

> NISQ simulators and accelerators;

NISQ (Noisy Intermediate Scale Quantum) simulators and accelerators will be the first quantum machines developed without reliable error correction. In particular, the plan will enable the Very Large Computing Center (TGCC) to be equipped with an initial infrastructure of hybrid quantum computers, based on the expertise of GENCI and CEA, the designer and operator of TGCC, the main French public computer center based. and Bruyères-le-Châtel (91). From 2023, a hybrid quantum computer of 100 qubits should actually be housed on the TGCC.


The very large computer center at the CEA site in Bruyères-le-Châtel © P.Stroppa / CEA

> the sensorss quantum, quantum communication and post-quantum cryptography;

CEA has important conceptual and technological building blocks to develop communications and quantum sensors and help bring these technologies to maturity, which it will not fail to use during collaborations that will be part of this PEPR.

CEA, in particular its Saclay team, will also contribute its post-quantum encryption skills.

> the enabling technologies that are essential for quantum technologies;

Finally, the plan will support research conducted by CEA teams in related fields crucial to the emergence of quantum computers and quantum technologies: cryogenic electronics, controlled nano-implantation of ions in materials, sources of entangled photons, and technological bricks that allow the use of photons and electrons as quantum systems, light emitting sources with single organic molecules, spintronic units in the quantum regime, etc.


Installation of a quantum electrodynamic experiment in a refrigerator designed to bring the experiment to -273 ° C. © P. Stroppa / CEA

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