Quantum Computing

What if the speed of computing currently available increases thousand times? Or the internet technology becomes more secure? Or every other sector where computer is widely used like healthcare, trade & commerce and scientific research become more reliable and far less times costly? Sounds good? Yes! We are entering the new era of computer technology, the era of “Quantum computing”.

What is Quantum computing?

Quantum computing applies the properties of quantum physics to process information. Operating with Nano-scale components at temperatures colder than intergalactic space, quantum computing has the potential to solve some of the world’s toughest challenges. Taking only days or hours to solve problems that would take billions of years using today’s computers, quantum computers will enable new discoveries in the areas of healthcare, energy, environmental systems, smart materials, and beyond.

How Quantum Computer Works?

In quantum computing, a ‘qubit’ (short for quantum bit) is a unit of quantum information—similar to a classical bit. Where classical bits hold a single binary value such as a 0 or 1, a qubit can hold both values at the same time in what’s known as a superposition state. When multiple qubits act coherently, they can process multiple options simultaneously. This allows them to process information in a fraction of time it would take even the fastest non-quantum systems many years.

Benefits of Quantum Computing

  1. Addressing world hunger: With the aid of quantum computers, chemists can work to identify a new catalyst for fertilizer to help reduce greenhouse emissions and improve global food production. This solution requires the ability to model molecular interactions which are too complex for classical computers, but well-suited for quantum computers. The field of chemistry is an area in which quantum computers will have significant impact.
  2. Reducing Energy Loss: Quantum computers will help advance materials science, creating superior new alternatives and greener technologies. One potential quantum computing application is the development of high-temperature superconductors which could enable lossless transmission of energy. New discoveries enabled by quantum computers will help identify materials with properties suitable for high-temperature superconductivity—a level of complexity that is out of reach for the computers we use today.
  3. Solving Optimization Problems in Machine Learning: Quantum computing can bring speed and efficiency to complex optimization problems in machine learning. For example, large factories aiming to maximize output require optimization of each individual process, as well as all participating components. Quantum computers can help deliver optimization insights for streamlined output, reduced waste, and lowered costs.

IBM’s initiative: IBM Q is an industry first initiative to build universal quantum computers for business and science. They are developing salable quantum systems, and potential applications for the technology we make available today. IBM Q quantum devices are accessed using Qiskit, a modular, open-source programming framework. A worldwide network of Fortune 500 companies, academic institutions, and startups use IBM Q technology and collaborate with IBM Research to advance quantum computing.

By: Kawsar Alam Sibly, Dept of Arabic. University of Dhaka

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