Innovators in the Field
The German-speaking world, like other developed regions around the globe, has its fair share of startups in the ‘hard tech’ space. And in quantum computing (QC), the case is much the same. For a region that could claim to be the spiritual home of quantum mechanics, the great-granddaddy of today’s innovators in the field, with the likes of Gustav Kirchhoff, Ludwig Boltzmann and the great Alfred Einstein to name as long ago denizens, it’s just a natural progression to the state of research in Germany and Austria.
Oh, and let’s not forget about the part of Switzerland with its German-speaking minority, too, adding more to the pool.
With Alpine Quantum Technologies (AQT) from Austria joining the likes of ID Quantique and Qnami in Switzerland, and Germany represented by a handful of others: HQS Quantum Simulations (HQS), QuantiCor, JoS Quantum and InfiniQuant, there is no shortage of startups ready to take the baton in the name of QC development. One of the most interesting, however, is Kiutra.
Founded in the summer of 2017 as a spinoff from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the startup focusses its resources on solving some of the biggest problems regarding noise, or decoherence, in quantum computers by developing turn-key refrigeration solutions that utilize cryogenic temperatures (Kelvin is –273.15°C) , as well as sub Kelvin temperatures. Counter to many architectural systems in QC, which rely on low temperatures using the Helium-3 — an expensive and rare isotope — to combat decoherence, Kiutra’s approach uses ‘all-electrical cooling devices combining magnetic refrigeration and closed-cycle pre-cooling’, which they say are both scalable and low-maintenance.
With an undisclosed amount of cash coming from a Seed Round consortium headed by High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF), VC investor APEX Ventures and the UnternehmerTUM Initiative for Industrial Innovators, the future looks rosy for the Bavarian QC tech startup.
The co-founder of the Munich-based startup, CEO Alexander Regnat, had this to say about the investment his company received:
‘In HTGF, APEX Ventures, and UnternehmerTUM we have gained strong and experienced partners for our startup. They will help us to enhance the Kiutra brand’s profile on the international stage and to lift the technology to the next level.’
With an impressive 135 startups and private companies active on the QC market as of October 2019, according to the Quantum Computing Report, it is plain to see competition in the coming years will be fierce. But with this ferocity, hopefully, there will come a natural symbiosis of scientific understanding and mutual research that will move the industry into its next stage of development.
And Kiutra is convinced its path in QC is worth developing further.