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Intel unveils Tunnel Falls 12-qubit quantum chip

The Tunnel Falls chip

Intel has announced the release of its latest quantum chip, a 12-qubit chip called "Tunnel Falls". It said the chip is being made available to the quantum research community.

Aside from launching this new chip, the company is partnering with the Laboratory for Physical Sciences (LPS) at the University of Maryland, College Park’s Qubit Collaboratory (LQC) to advance research in the area of quantum computing. Providing a statement about today’s announcements, Jim Clarke, director of Quantum Hardware at Intel said:

“Tunnel Falls is Intel’s most advanced silicon spin qubit chip to date and draws upon the company’s decades of transistor design and manufacturing expertise. The release of the new chip is the next step in Intel’s long-term strategy to build a full-stack commercial quantum computing system. While there are still fundamental questions and challenges that must be solved along the path to a fault-tolerant quantum computer, the academic community can now explore this technology and accelerate research development.”

Intel said it’s working with LQC through the US Army Research Office to provide the chip to research labs. Labs that will collaborate with Intel include LPS, Sandia National Laboratories, the University of Rochester, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The academic institutions do not have the capacity to fabricate the Tunnel Falls chips so Intel is making them so that researchers can get started right away on experiments and research. The chip is fabricated on 300-millimeter wafers and leverages advanced capabilities such as extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV) and gate and contact processing techniques.

The company said that it’s looking to improve the performance of Tunnel Falls and integrate it into its full quantum stack with the Intel Quantum SDK. It said work has begun on its next-gen quantum chip and its hopes for this to be released next year. It also plans to expand its collaboration partners.

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