Intel has begun manufacturing chips for quantum computers. “We’re [moving] quantum computing from the academic space to the semiconductor space,” says Jim Clarke, director of quantum hardware at Intel.
While regular computers store and manipulate data by representing binary 1s and 0s, a quantum computer uses quantum bits or “Qubits,” exploiting quantum phenomena to represent data in more than one state at once.
Quantum computing has long been an academic curiosity, and there are enormous challenges to handling quantum information reliably. Intel’s quantum chip uses superconducting qubits. The Intel researchers adapted the company’s existing 300-nanometer “Flip chip” processor design to support the delicacy of quantum processing.
Intel isn’t the only company working to make quantum computing practical.