March 24, 2023

CEO NTT ResearchLeading positions in physics and informatics, cryptography and information security, and medical and health informatics.

First of all, the science of quantum computing or its purpose? There is the latter case. Physicists have been investigating several different ways to exploit qubits (quantum versions of binary bits) over the years, but the technology to date has been primarily built specifically to solve certain types of problems.

One of the labs I’m involved with is conducting fundamental research on quantum computing, while collaborating with various academic groups interested in applications where quantum computing is expected to have an impact, such as in the areas of compressed sensing and drug discovery. However, jobs in other areas are advancing rapidly – ​​at the intersection of transportation and manufacturing, for example.Two years ago, a McKinsey & Company One in 10 of all quantum computing use cases being explored could benefit the automotive industry, according to the study. Some of these cases involve the kinds of batteries that will power the electric vehicles (EVs) of the future.

electric car battery background

Here’s a bigger problem: While the cost of EV battery packs has dropped dramatically over the past decade, batteries based on lithium-ion technology still make up a significant portion of the total cost of an EV. High purchase prices will hinder wider adoption and delay hopes of reducing carbon footprints.

In addition to cost structure, there is performance. Consumers expect electric vehicles to operate reliably, travel long distances without recharging, have a minimal impact on the environment and be safe to drive. Let’s elaborate on what these requirements mean for product developers and engineers. Reliability and distance are related to factors such as battery life, energy density, charging time, balance voltage, temperature and discharge rate. Green means recyclable, avoiding pollution and reducing waste. The safety of a battery ultimately depends on the thermal stability of its chemical composition.

In the end, solutions to complex problems require trade-offs. Take Tesla, which last year decided to change the type of batteries it uses in standard-range cars.The company dropped lithium-nickel-cobalt-aluminum (NCA) in favor of Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP), although not as energy intensive or low temperature resistant, but less expensive and safer. These compounds are associated with the positive or negative electrode of the battery. Automakers are betting that quantum computing will help them determine the best battery chemistry.

Automakers and Quantum

Volkswagen has been working on quantum computing since 2017, first with the Canadian company D-Wave and later with Google. In 2018, they reported using quantum computing to simulate molecules such as Lithium-hydrogen and carbon chains, with the goal of developing “tailor-made batteries”.Mercedes-Benz parent company Daimler hires IBM’s quantum team for research Lithium Sulfur In 2020, it was recently reported to be working with IBM to better understand lithium ion Chemical.

Toyota is working with Tokyo-based QunaSys on quantum technology to improve modeling of electric vehicle battery materials electronic structure. Hyundai partners with Maryland-based IonQ to research compounds for its batteries, including Lithium oxide. IonQ was founded in 2015 and began trading in 2021 as “the world’s first publicly traded pure-play quantum computing company.” Unlike Google, IBM and other companies that use superconducting circuits to generate qubits, IonQ uses trapped ions.

Another startup, Canadian company Xanadu, recently nature Regarding achieving quantum advantage (i.e. proving that their results exceed those of classical computers), it is also for batteries. In a paper co-authored with several academics and Volkswagen researchers, the Xanadu scientists describe a “quantum algorithm for computing balancing cell voltage, ion mobility, and thermal stability.” Their goal was to simulate another cathode material, Dilithium Iron Silicate.

Like the Coherent Ising Machine (CIM) used in one of my company’s labs, Xanadu’s approach to quantum computing is based on photonics.

pre-generic method

In addition to batteries, there are many other automotive-related problems that quantum computing is poised to solve—and industry leaders would do well to keep an eye on developments in this area.BMW recently announced the winners Quantum Computing Challenge Involves autonomous driving, material deformation, equipment configuration and quality analysis.

At the same time, existing technologies are still able to meet the current massive computing demands of the industry.The UK-based Faraday Institute uses a digital supercomputer (named Michael) to study lithium-ion batteries, next-generation lithium-ion cathode materials, and more. Abandoning today’s supercomputers would be a mistake, in part because there is great promise for combining quantum and classical capabilities in hybrid architectures.

However, since we are still years away from a “universal” quantum device capable of solving any number of problems, discussions about quantum computing may still be close to the specific problem it is designed to solve, whether with electric car batteries or any other Questions about applications and industries.

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