Microsoft and Photonic are collaborating on the path to quantum at scale

Microsoft and Photonic are collaborating on the path to quantum at scale

We are pleased to announce a strategic co-innovation collaboration with Photonic Inc., a company focused on building scalable, fault-tolerant, and distributed quantum technologies. Our shared mission is to unleash the next stages of quantum networking and empower the quantum computing ecosystem with new capabilities enabled by our unique, integrated approaches to scalable quantum infrastructure.

By combining Photonic’s new spin-photon architecture that natively supports quantum communication over standard telecommunications wavelengths with global scale and modern Azure infrastructure, we will work together to integrate the capabilities of quantum networking into everyday operating environments. Together, we aim to deliver new technologies that will enable reliable quantum communication over long distances and accelerate scientific research and development using quantum computing hardware that will be integrated into Azure Quantum Elements.

Still video of three people sitting on chairs on stage with blue background and white dots.  Seated from left to right are Jason Zander, Executive Vice President at Microsoft, Dr. Stephanie Simons, Founder and CEO of Photonic, and Esther De Nicolas Benito, Senior Director at Microsoft.
Stay tuned to learn more about the collaboration between Microsoft and Photonic.

Powering the quantum ecosystem with the next stage of quantum networking

“We are thrilled to join forces with Photonic in improving the world through quantum technologies. There is an opportunity to ignite new capabilities across the quantum ecosystem that extends beyond computing, such as networking and sensing, opening up applications and scientific discovery at scale across chemistry, materials science, metrology, communications, and many other fields. The capabilities we aim to provide with Photonic can enable this vision and make a quantum impact much more quickly than is possible in any other way.”—Jason Zander, executive vice president of strategic missions and technologies at Microsoft.

Realizing this vision requires a fundamental capability: distributing entanglement over long distances. Photonic’s unique architecture is based on highly connected silicon quantum bits with a photon spin interface. Using a qubit with a photon interface, this new approach communicates using standard communications fibers and ultra-low loss wavelengths. When paired with Microsoft’s global infrastructure, platforms, and scale of the Azure cloud, this technology will integrate new quantum networking capabilities into everyday operating environments.

Animation titled

Together, Microsoft and Photonic will address three phases of quantum networking.

  • In the level 1 At the physical layer, we will aim to achieve entanglement between two separate quantum devices via photons through communications fibers.
  • To enable Stage 2 Correlation Layer,We will aim to deliver an unprecedented quantum repeater that can reliably capture, entangle and retain quantum information for a short period.
  • Finally, in Stage 3 Network Layer We will focus on delivering, through our co-innovation collaboration, a reliable quantum repeater that is fault-tolerant and works with our Azure cloud. Using this technology, we can overcome any distance limitations in the network, and enable the ability to create a large-scale global quantum internet.
A diagram explaining the three stages of quantum networks: the first physical stage, the second interconnection stage, and the third network stage.  The diagram includes illustrations showing point-to-point, many-to-one, and quantum Internet communications.

Joint innovation to accelerate scientific discoveries

“It will take a global ecosystem to unleash the full promise of quantum computing. No company or country can do it alone. That’s why we’re so excited to partner with Microsoft to deliver these new quantum capabilities. Their extensive global infrastructure, proven platforms, and incredible scale The Azure cloud makes it the ideal partner to unleash the transformative potential of quantum computing and accelerate innovation across the quantum computing ecosystem.-doctor. Stephanie Simons, founder and CEO of Photonic, and co-chair of the National Advisory Board for Quantum Strategy in Canada.

Only through global collaboration and co-innovation will we empower people to unlock solutions to the biggest challenges facing our industries and our world. Just like the cloud democratizes access to supercomputers — previously available only to governments, research universities, and the most well-resourced companies — we are on a mission to design an ecosystem for fault-tolerant quantum supercomputing at scale in Azure. Last June we announced our roadmap to a Level 3 quantum supercomputer along with peer-reviewed research showing we had achieved our first breakthrough.

Scientific discovery is critical to our global future, and we want to empower today’s scientists with the best offerings available in the ecosystem, which is why, as part of our co-innovation collaboration, we plan to integrate unique quantum Photonic devices into our Azure Quantum Elements offering when it becomes available. Our collaboration with Photonic seeks to enable scientific exploration at the first level, foundational quantum computing, with a firm commitment to reaching higher levels of flexibility and scale on the path to future quantum supercomputing.

Close-up of a photonically bonded silicon qubit chip with copper and gold components on a black background.
A new approach – photonically coupled silicon qubits.

With Azure Quantum Elements, your quantum solutions will be fully integrated with high-value advances in high-performance computing (HPC) and AI so you can transform your R&D operations today while ensuring you’ll be ready for quantum supercomputing to seamlessly scale into the future. You can sign up for the private preview of Azure Quantum Elements now.

To learn more about how Microsoft and Photonic are working together to advance the next stages of quantum networking and empower the quantum ecosystem with new capabilities, register for a January episode of the Quantum Innovator Series.

Learn more about Photonic

Photonic is building a scalable, fault-tolerant and unified quantum networking and computing platform, uniquely based on quantum bits embedded in silicon. The Photonic platform provides a native communications network interface and silicon fabrication capability. Photonic is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, and also has offices in the US and UK. To learn more about the company, visit their website.

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