A new Quantum Computing startup has just emerged out of stealth mode: Universal Quantum, announcing an oversubscribed £3.6 million seed-funding round. The company is set to develop its new quantum computing approach and compete with the world’s biggest quantum computing companies with backing from prestigious list of investors includes Hoxton Ventures, Village Global, Propagator VC, Luminous VC, 7percent, as well as influential individuals.
The University of Sussex spin-out company, founded by quantum computing experts Professor Winfried Hensinger and Dr Sebastian Weidt in 2018, is intent on building the world’s first large-scale quantum computer with Hensinger as the Chief Scientist & Chairman and Weidt as the Chief Executive Officer.
Hensinger and Weidt have developed a radical new approach to building a quantum computer. While some companies have created small quantum machines, Universal Quantum believes that only its technology has a realistic opportunity of being scaled up into machines large enough to unleash the huge potential of quantum computing.
Key to Universal Quantum’s appeal are some fundamental differences in its approach to building a large-scale quantum computer compared to the rest of the field. The startup has developed technology based on trapped ions to carry out calculations using well-established microwave technology, such as that used in mobile phones, removing the need for a prohibitive number of laser beams. It substantially reduces the necessary cooling requirements, allowing to operate at a much easier to obtain temperature of (-200C) which is critical in making quantum computers far more practical and capable of operating millions of qubits. It has also developed a unique modular approach based on fast electric-field links connecting individual modules, enabling the company to scale-up to practical quantum computers that are able to process millions of qubits.