US Markets
IBM

U.S. to spend $625 million in five quantum information research hubs

Credit: REUTERS/STEVE MARCUS

The U.S. Department of Energy on Wednesday said it will provide $625 million over the next five years for five newly formed quantum information research hubs as it tries to keep ahead of competing nations like China on the emerging technology.

By Jane Lanhee Lee

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug 26 (Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Energy on Wednesday said it will provide $625 million over the next five years for five newly formed quantum information research hubs as it tries to keep ahead of competing nations like China on the emerging technology.

The funding is part of $1.2 billion earmarked in the National Quantum Initiative Act in 2018.

Researchers believe quantum computers could operate millions of times faster than today’s advanced supercomputers, making possible potential tasks ranging from mapping complex molecular structures and chemical reactions to boosting the power of artificial intelligence.

“It’s absolutely imperative the United States continues to lead the world in AI and quantum. We know our adversaries around the world are pursuing their own advances,” U.S. Chief Technology Officer Michael Kratsios said during a White House press briefing announcing the quantum information research funding and another $100 million plus investment into the National Science Foundation’s AI Research Institutes.

The five research hubs are each led by the Energy Department’s Argonne, Brookhaven, Fermi, Lawrence Berkeley and Oak Ridge national laboratories. The hubs are comprised of top research universities, other national labs and big tech companies in the quantum computing space such as International Business Machines Corp IBM.N, Intel Corp INTC.O, Microsoft Corp MSFT.O, and quantum computer startups Rigetti & Co and ColdQuanta Inc. An Italian research lab and a Canadian university are also taking part.

Missing from the list are Google parent Alphabet Inc GOOGL.O, considered one of the top firms in quantum computing, and Honeywell International Inc HON.N, which unveiled its quantum computing business in the past year. The Energy Department spokesperson declined to comment on whether they had been part of a proposal that didn’t receive funding.

Paul Dabbar, under secretary for science at the Energy Department, said the private sector contributed another $340 million worth of labor, equipment, lab space and other assets to the project.

(Reporting by Jane Lanhee Lee; Editing by Leslie Adler)

((jane.lee@thomsonreuters.com))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

In This Story

IBMINTCMSFTGOOGLHON

Latest Markets Videos

Reuters

Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest international multimedia news provider reaching more than one billion people every day. Reuters provides trusted business, financial, national, and international news to professionals via Thomson Reuters desktops, the world's media organizations, and directly to consumers at Reuters.com and via Reuters TV.

Learn More