IBM starts work on European quantum data centre

IBM is looking to meet demand for provisioned quantum systems across the EU by planning a pioneering data centre facility in Germany

Expected for completion in 2024, the planned Ehningen-based data centre from IBM is being set in motion with the aim of facilitating access to quantum computing for businesses, research institutions and government bodies.

Serving as IBM Quantum’s European cloud region, multiple quantum systems are set to be incorporated, each with utility scale quantum processors (over 100 qubits — the two-state unit of information in the technology).

The facility — which would be IBM’s second quantum data centre after its New York site — is being designed to help clients continue managing GDPR compliance, including processing all job data within EU borders.

Q&A: IDC research manager on how quantum will transform businessHeather West, Ph.D, quantum computing research lead at IDC, spoke to Information Age about how quantum could transform business in the coming years.

“Europe has some of the world’s most advanced users of quantum computers, and interest is only accelerating with the era of utility scale quantum processors,” said Jay Gambetta, IBM fellow and vice-president of IBM Quantum.

“The planned quantum data centre and associated cloud region will give European users a new option as they seek to tap the power of quantum computing in an effort to solve some of the world’s most challenging problems.”

Ana Paula Assis, IBM general manager for EMEA, commented: “Our quantum data centre in Europe is an integral piece of our global endeavour. It will provide new opportunities for our clients to collaborate side-by-side with our scientists in Europe, as well as their own clients, as they explore how best to apply quantum in their industry.”

UK Government announces 10-year quantum funding scheme worth £2.5bnA decade-long programme has been launched by the UK Government, entailing £2.5bn in funding towards quantum computing initiatives.

Quantum network collaboration

Quantum computing has been explored by IBM since the launch of IBM Quantum System One in Janurary 2019, with services being delivered through its containerised service and programming model Qiskit Runtime.

Currently, over 60 organisations across Europe are accessing quantum hardware and software via the cloud, as part of IBM’s Quantum Network.

Potential uses for quantum computing being explored including material science, high energy physics, energy transition, sustainability, and financial applications.

“We are collaborating with IBM to combine quantum and classical computing in a seamless and scalable experience for our customers to explore applications of quantum computing,” said Adel Al-Saleh, Deutsche Telekom board member and chief executive of IBM Quantum Network member, T-Systems.

“Having access to a quantum data centre dedicated to Europe will help lower the access barrier for our customers as they decide on how to take their first, decisive steps in exploring and using quantum.”


Preparing for post-quantum in 10 stepsWith post-quantum technology having the potential to trigger a new wave of cyber threats, we identify 10 steps that organisations should take to prepare.

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Aaron Hurst

Aaron Hurst is Information Age's senior reporter, providing news and features around the hottest trends across the tech industry.

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