IBM is working on three quantum processors to be released in the next three years. By 2023, the company hopes to reach the milestone of more than a thousand qubits. That must be done with the Condor processor.
IBM Quantum Computing has set out what it says is an aggressive roadmap for its plans to scale up quantum systems. This month, the company quietly started using the Hummingbird: a quantum processor with 65 qubits. One of the properties of this is that the company can read signals from eight qubits at once.
The Hummingbird is a prelude to the Eagle, which should be released next year and then offers 127 qubits. IBM uses, among other things, through-silicon via-channels for the processor and the company places the qubits in a separate layer to maintain coherence, ie to prevent external disruption of the fragile system. IBM will also look at the cooperation of qubits for error correction at the Eagle. The company still places the qubits in a hexagonal structure, just like the current Falcon quantum processor with 27 qubits.
The successor to Eagle is called Osprey and it should be released in 2022 and contain 433 qubits. IBM will use improved cooling for this processor, among other things. For the Condor, which should be released in 2023 with 1121 qubits, IBM uses a completely redesigned refrigerator called Goldeneye, measuring three by two meters. IBM uses superconductivity qubits, the so-called transmons, which must be kept at temperatures just above absolute zero of −273 ° C.
IBM hopes to use the Condor to research complex problems that can be solved more efficiently with a quantum system than a classic supercomputer. IBM has been working on quantum systems for years, just like Google, Intel and Microsoft have been doing. More on this subject can be found in the background article The Race to a Quantum Computer – Will Google, IBM or Microsoft?