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    Quanscient – developer of quantum algorithms from Tampere, Finland

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    Scientist Depopam Datta from VTT and Finland's first quantum computer. Photo: VTT

    Quanscient offers simulation services that are purely cloud-based – and is getting ready for the quantum era by building quantum algorithms. VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland is looking forward to the numerous opportunities that quantum technology is about to deliver.

    Quantum advantage (or quantum supremacy) is a key concept of the quantum computing. It is reached when a quantum device can solve a problem that is impossible to solve with any classical supercomputers. 

    Google announced to have reached the goal in 2019, and later news from China reported of similar achievement. This launched the race for building a quantum computer and created quite a lot of quantum hype.

    Tampere-based Quanscient is one step ahead, building quantum algorithms. Quantum computers that will be needed for Quanscient’s algorithms don’t exists yet, but the time was ripe to found a company creating them. 

    – We needed to start developing the algorithms now, or it would be too late by the time the quantum computers capable of solving industrial-level problems will be ready, says Quanscient CEO Juha Riippi.

    Quanscient team
    Quanscient co-founders: CTO Alexandre Halbach, CSO Valtteri Lahtinen, CEO Juha Riippi and Software Architect Asser Lähdemäki.

    Solid Finnish quantum expertise 

    Quantum computing is already offered as a cloud-based service by e.g. IBM, Google and Microsoft. It is based on the NISQ (noisy intermediate-scale quantum) computers. These are not yet perfect quantum devices, but they can do computation that is potentially as good as classical supercomputers.

    – In five or ten years, maybe, the world will see scalable machines exhibiting quantum advantage and the full benefit of quantum computing, says Himadri Majumdar, VTT Lead of the Quantum Programmes.

    The US is a global market leader in quantum computing, and many countries are now investing heavily in quantum technologies. Finland is in a unique position, because quantum technologies have been researched there since the 1960’s.

    – Finland’s investment is not very high at the moment, but we are taking advantage of the investments we have made over the decades. Finnish companies like Bluefors and IQM are global leaders because they have such a strong inheritance, says Majumdar.

    VTT has announced a large-scale quantum initiative for Finland, and as a part of it, a project to build the country’s first quantum computer. The project is running as scheduled, and the first phase 5-qubit device was up and running in November 2021.

    – Our experience in building the quantum computer, and our know-how in developing quantum algorithms will help us develop quantum foresight to, for example, identify future trends and support companies in understanding how and when their business will be affected, says Majumdar.

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    From left: Senior Scientist Visa Vesterinen, Scientist Debopam Datta, VTT’s Programme Manager in Quantum Himadri Majumdar and Scientist Lassi Lehtisyrjä posing with the Finland's first quantum computer. Photo: VTT.

    Simulation saves time in product development

    There is a team of four co-founders in Quanscient, all of them top experts in their own fields: science, technology, sales. Quanscient was founded in September 2021.

    Quanscient offers simulation services that help their customers to get products to the market faster. Simulation saves time because digital tools can be used for product design.

    – For example, everything that moves is nowadays wind-tunnel-tested while in design phase, and with fluid dynamics modelling this phase can be replaced by simulation. When designing a new microchip, simulation may replace many prototype iterations, says Riippi.

    Quanscient is focusing on FEM (Finite Element Method) -based simulations.  They are extremely useful for e.g. builders of quantum computers and designers of all kinds of microelectronics, be it the next generation chips, transmitters, antennas, etc.

    Quanscient is now developing their quantum algorithm library and building the cloud service. As a brand new company, it can head directly for the cloud services, where the simulation power will not be hindered by the hardware in use.

    – In the cloud, a large simulation can be split, decentralised and run in both quantum and classical computers when necessary. Quanscient has the technology and expertise for this, Riippi says.

    From the very beginning, Quanscient has targeted both domestic and global markets. Deep tech companies are their first customer segment.

    The Finnish quantum ecosystem

    The Finnish quantum initiative called BusinessQ is gathering the entire Finnish quantum community together: SW and HW companies, scientists and other stakeholders. The ecosystem can share information about quantum markets, networks, science and technology for mutual benefit. Big companies like OP Group, have also joined, as they will be the end users of quantum computing.

    – It is a strong and growing quantum community in Finland, and it looks very promising. We want to welcome more companies to join the BusinessQ and explore the opportunities quantum will offer, says Majumdar.

    The effects of quantum computing will be disruptive in many industries. Major changes will occur for example in the financial sector; in molecular simulations such as the battery industry or medicine; or climate system modelling. Also risks, like information security violations or cybercrime, need to be taken seriously.

    Riippi and Majumdar emphasise that all businesses should explore quantum computing and consider the options and opportunities – now.

    Author: Päivi Stenroos

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