Universities Space Research Association (USRA) today announced that DARPA has awarded the organization and its partners Rigetti Computing and the NASA Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (QuAIL) to work as a team to advance the state of art in quantum optimization. USRA, as the prime contractor of the award, will manage the collaboration.
The collaboration will focus on developing a superconducting quantum processor, hardware aware software and custom algorithms that take direct advantage of the hardware advances to solve scheduling and asset allocation problems. In addition, the team will design methods for benchmarking the hardware against classical computers to determine quantum advantage.
In particular, the work will target scheduling problems whose complexity goes beyond what has been done so far with the quantum approximate optimization algorithm (QAOA). USRA’s Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science (RIACS) has been working on quantum algorithms for planning and scheduling for NASA QuAIL since 2012. RIACS as the prime contractor will manage the collaboration between NASA QuAIL and Rigetti Computing.
The grant is a part of the DARPA Optimization with Noisy Intermediate-Scale Quantum program (ONISQ). The goal of this program is to establish that quantum information processing using NISQ devices has a quantitative advantage for solving real-world-combinatorial optimization problems using the QAOA method.
This project running 2019-2021 is investigating a multitude of new communications receiver decoding algorithms that are amenable to be used in hybrid setting with NISQ quantum computers. The designed methods will be tested on real hardware and benchmarked against the best known classical approaches. In addition to spectral efficiency, the project will also consider how quantum-enabled techniques can improve the energy efficiency of massive multiple-input/multiple-output (MIMO) algorithms. More info on the project website.
USRA has received a subaward from NSF, in team with Stanford, Caltech and Cornell University, to work on the prestigious 5-year program Expeditions in Computing. Collaborators include NASA QuAIL, NTT, NII and Microsoft. This Expeditions award exploits unconventional computing architectures, called Coherent Ising Machines (CIMs), to solve a class of optimization problems. CIMs provide a platform to test ideas for computer engineering in the post-Moore's Law era. Next-generation CIMs also hold great promise to drive substantial practical advances in artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities in multiple fields. In addition, the unconventional memory format used by these machines may establish a pathway towards novel quantum information technologies. More info on NSF press release and Project Website.
USRA conducts quantum computing research, development and education programs that engage a broad ecosystem of collaborators from universities, government organizations, and the private sector. There are multiple ways to collaborate including obtaining time on quantum computing hardware; collaborating on research and education projects involving quantum devices, quantum algorithms and quantum applications; and collaborating on research and education proposals to funding organizations.
QuAIL is the space agency's hub for assessing the potential of quantum computers to impact computational challenges faced by the agency in the decades to come. The laboratory is lead by Dr. Eleanor Rieffel. The USRA quantum team is proud to serve the QuAIL mission by providing technical workforce to NASA since the inception of the laboratory. For more information, visit the NAMS website.
The USRA Q2B Applied NISQ Computing paper award select a recent research paper to receive an invitation to the practical quantum computing Q2B conference. Additionally, the award includes a prize of free compute time on a multitude of quantum computing platform. More details here.
USRA, Standard Chartered Bank, NYSTEC, and NASA are soliciting proposals to run experiments on the D-Wave quantum annealer hosted at Ames Research Center. Proposals will be evaluated on their merit across multiple factors, as detailed in the Request for Proposals.
For more information, go to Cycle 4 - Request for Proposals Program.
The USRA-NYSTEC-AFRL QIS program has the objective of the program are to enable the current and future workforce in emerging QIS technologies related to Computing, and develop further the Quantum Computing User Community. The program supported the material of the Q2B conference and the coursework at the Airforce Institute of Technology AFIT.