PsiQuantum has raised $215 million

PsiQuantum CEO Jeremy O’Brien.PHOTOGRAPHER: CARLOS CHAVARRIA FOR BLOOMBERG BUSINESSWEEK

PsiQuantum, a 5-year-old startup based in Palo Alto, building a scalable, fault tolerant, silicon photonic quantum computer, has just raised $215 million, as we announced yesterday.

The startup aims to build a computer with 1 million qubits within “a handful of years,” which would mark a major leap forward and deal a devastating blow to rival projects by the likes of Google, Honeywell, IBM, and a sea of startups and university labs. 

Jeremy O’Brien, CEO, and his co-founders (Terry Rudolph, Mark Thompson, and Pete Shadbolt) are Australian and British academics and have hired a hundred smart people for 5 years.

Researchers have discovered numerous techniques for creating qubits, but PsiQuantum is making them with photons and using reflective mirrors. GlobalFoundries, one of the world’s top chipmakers, has already started producing early versions of PsiQuantum’s chips using its standard manufacturing facilities.

PsiQuantum’s big claim is that its technology will be able to string together 1 million qubits and distill out 100 to 300 error-corrected or “useful” qubits from that total. 

Besides Microsoft and Playground Gobal, PsiQuantum’s investors include Atomico, Founders Fund, Redpoint Ventures, and BlackRock Advisors. (Bloomberg)

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