Published On: July 10, 2023
  • The Qilimanjaro-GMV joint venture has completed the first milestone in the construction of the quantum computer at BSC, which consists of remote access to a 5-qubit quantum chip.
  • This chip is operational at Qilimanjaro’s Quantum Computing Technology laboratory at the Institut de Fisica d’Altes Energies (IFAE) in Barcelona and is, in fact, the first quantum computer located in Spanish territory.
  • This quantum computer has been fully constructed and launched by the joint venture of Spanish companies Qilimanjaro and GMV, using European technology in all its components.
  • Access to this chip will allow the Spanish “Quantum Spain” community, coordinated by BSC, to carry out the first executions of quantum circuits under complete Spanish control.

The joint venture formed by Qilimanjaro Quantum Tech and GMV has completed the first delivery specified in the contract for the installation of the first quantum computer in Spain, in service for the Barcelona Supercomputing Center – Centro Nacional de Supercomputación (BSC-CNS), as part of the Quantum Spain project coordinated by BSC.

This first delivery consisted of granting BSC access to a 5-qubit superconducting chip through what is called Quantum-as-a-Service (QaaS), which means remote connection to Qilimanjaro’s Quantum Computing Technology laboratory at the Institut de Fisica d’Altes Energies (IFAE) in Barcelona, via the cloud using the Qibo software developed by Qilimanjaro.

This Gen0 chip, manufactured by QuantWare, will enable the Spanish academic and business community to carry out the first executions of quantum circuits under complete Spanish control. It is the first of a series of 7 QPUs that will be provided to BSC throughout the duration of the contract, with the last one being the Gen6 chip with 30 qubits.

“This first delivery marks a significant milestone as Qilimanjaro becomes a pioneer in granting access to Spain’s first quantum computer through an HPC center. We are immensely proud not only to achieve this feat but also to partner with an exceptional group of European providers, such as QuantWare,” comments Marta Estarellas, CEO of Qilimanjaro. “Together, we have demonstrated the power of collaboration and innovation to push the boundaries of quantum technology.”

Along with access to the chip, a manual has also been provided with the basic utility libraries that allow access to Qilimanjaro’s servers, in order to send executions to the quantum chip. Qilimanjaro’s QaaS servers will be available 24/7 through a service to handle execution requests, with GMV providing user support.

“It is an honor for us to participate, together with Qilimanjaro and the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, in making the first quantum computer in Spain a reality, a milestone that is a clear example of the continuous innovation that guides GMV,” says Julio Vivero, Business Partner at GMV.

For the successful development of this quantum computer, the teams at Qilimanjaro responsible for hardware, control software, and quantum applications have been working in a fully integrated manner, and their success demonstrates the value of a differential “full stack” approach, which is uncommon in the industry.

Once the installation at the BSC headquarters is completed, Spain will have the first purely European quantum computer for public use in southern Europe, integrated with the MareNostrum 5 supercomputer, the most powerful in our country and among the most advanced in Europe and the world.

“We are very pleased with this first milestone and look forward to moving to a second phase very soon, where we will provide access to all users and begin working with this quantum computer that will mark a before and after in the development of these technologies in Spain and Europe,” says Alba Cervera, researcher at BSC and coordinator of Quantum Spain.

Sergi Girona, Director of Operations at BSC, states: “We celebrate the delivery of the first quantum computer, an essential step for the development of this innovative technology in our country. This processor has been temporarily installed in Qilimanjaro’s laboratory while the space in the BSC chapel is appropriately prepared to host the Quantum Spain quantum computer permanently.”

“This delivery, despite being only the first in a series that will culminate with a 30-qubit quantum computer by the end of 2025, has been a fundamental milestone for the joint venture. It has compelled us to an unprecedented cross-functional effort among Qilimanjaro’s divisions of theory, software, and hardware, as well as in coordination with GMV, which has demonstrated the extremely high technical and professional quality of all our teams and allows us to face the future of this project with renewed confidence,” comments Manel Martínez, project leader in the joint venture formed by Qilimanjaro and GMV.