Yale quantum computing startup Quantum Circuits Inc. opens lab in New Haven
The potential of Yale’s research to drive economic growth and produce jobs took center stage on Jan. 24, as Yale startup company Quantum Circuits Inc. (QCI) opened its New Haven development and testing facility for quantum computing.
The facility includes 6,000 square feet of state-of-the-art laboratories and in-house manufacturing. It will house more than 20 scientists and engineers. Company officials said QCI plans to grow significantly over the next several years, increasing both the size of the facilities and the number of highly-skilled employees in New Haven.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony included participation from Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont, Yale Vice Provost for Research Peter Schiffer, and QCI co-founder and chief scientist Robert Schoelkopf, who is Sterling Professor of Applied Physics and Physics at Yale.
QCI is developing the first practical quantum computers. Quantum computing has the potential to enable calculations that are orders of magnitudes faster and more powerful than today’s supercomputers for certain types of problems. Applications will include drug design for biotech, materials science, improved processes for industrial chemicals, fintech, logistics, machine learning, and energy.
“We have already seen the power of combining fundamental scientific understanding with the multidisciplinary engineering team that we are building at QCI,” Schoelkopf said. “These new facilities will enable us to accelerate our development efforts and ensure that New Haven is at the forefront of the new wave of quantum information processing.”
QCI’s founding team — Michel Devoret, Yale’s F.W. Beinecke Professor of Applied Physics and Physics; Luigi Frunzio, a senior research scientist in applied physics; and Schoelkopf — pioneered the field of quantum computing with superconducting circuits. Their lab was the first to perform quantum algorithms and quantum error correction in integrated circuits.
Yale’s longstanding commitment to the field of quantum computing helped cultivate the work, as well as many years of government and philanthropic support, officials noted. Yale recently named quantum science as one of the university’s top priority investment areas.
“The story of QCI illustrates the potential to leverage university research to create jobs and to drive a competitive, high-tech economy. Yale is grateful for the generous federal investment in quantum science, the support of Connecticut Innovations and other state agencies, and of course the commitment by Canaan, Sequoia, and others in the private sector,” Schiffer said. “Yale is proud of all of the startups based on Yale inventions, and we look forward to working with the private sector and the state to build more companies in New Haven.”
Officials at the event cited QCI’s roots in New Haven, saying the company is an example of Connecticut as a home for new and innovative technology, often with academic work at Yale contributing to the momentum.
“Connecticut is the home of some of the brightest minds in the country, and we are excited that QCI has chosen our state as the location to develop the computing systems that will change the world,” Lamont said. “Innovative startups like this are responsible for transforming the way we live, work, and do business in the 21st century, which is why we place great value on having these high-tech pioneers as part of our business community.”
“This is terrific news. Connecticut is leading the way in research, manufacturing, and innovation, and the grand opening of QCI here in New Haven represents another huge step forward for our state’s economy and for quantum research across the globe,” said U.S. Senator Chris Murphy. “The fact that the world’s first quantum computer is going to be made in Connecticut makes me incredibly proud, and it speaks volumes about the unmatched talent of our workforce and the groundbreaking research being done at our universities. I look forward to working with QCI in any way I can to help make this project a success.”
“The opening of Quantum Circuits Inc. is an historic achievement for Connecticut and our country. Quantum computing is a promising new frontier in the technology space that could help advance security, drug discovery, logistics, and more, and New Haven provides a vibrant ecosystem to incubate QCI’s world-changing ideas and products,” said U.S. Representative Rosa DeLauro. “Innovative ventures like QCI and Yale’s work in this field are vital to our nation’s interests and global competitiveness, and I am proud to support them through Congressionally-funded scientific research.”
“It’s my great pleasure to help celebrate the launch of QCI on behalf of all city residents, businesses, and students,” said New Haven Mayor Toni N. Harp ’78 M.E.D. “Its commitment to quantum computing will complement a new software coding school in New Haven, the city’s commitment to high-speed internet service, and efforts throughout New Haven Public Schools to bridge the digital divide. Congratulations to QCI and Yale, with appreciation for all these efforts to keep New Haven at the cutting edge of the technology sector.”