Xanadu, a Canadian quantum hardware and technology company, has received a $4.4M investment from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC), according to a company news release.
The investment will expedite the development of Xanadu’s photonic quantum computers and make them available over the cloud. This project will also further the company’s overall progress towards the construction of energy-efficient universal quantum computers.
“Canadian cleantech entrepreneurs are tackling problems across Canada and in every sector. I have never been more positive about the future. The quantum hardware technology that Xanadu is building will develop quantum computers with the ability to solve extremely challenging computational problems, completing chemical calculations in minutes — which would otherwise require a million CPUs in a data center,” said Leah Lawrence, President and CEO, Sustainable Development Technology Canada.
Despite efforts to improve the power efficiency of traditional computing methods, the rapid growth of data centers and cloud computing presents a major source of new electricity consumption. In comparison to classical computing, quantum computing systems have the benefit of performing certain tasks and algorithms at an unprecedented rate. This will ultimately reduce the requirements for electrical power and the accompanying air and water emissions associated with electricity production.
Xanadu is developing a unique type of quantum computer, based on photonic technology, which is inherently more power-efficient than electronics. Xanadu’s photonic approach uses laser light to carry information through optical chips, rather than the electrons or ions used by their competitors. By using photonic technology, Xanadu’s quantum computers will one day have the ability to perform calculations at room temperature, and eliminate the bulky and power-hungry cooling systems required by most other types of quantum computers.
The project will be undertaken by Xanadu’s team of in-house scientists, with collaboration from the University of Toronto and Swiftride. The project will be carried out over three years and will encompass the development of Xanadu’s architecture, hardware, software and client interfaces with the overall goal of expediting the development of the company’s technology, and demonstrating the practical benefits of quantum computing for users and customers by the end of 2022.
“We are thrilled by the recognition and support that we are receiving from SDTC for the development of our technology. We firmly believe that our unique, photonic-based approach to quantum computing will deliver both valuable insights and tangible environmental benefits for our customers and partners,” said Christian Weedbrook, CEO of Xanadu.
Last year, Xanadu announced it raised $32 million in Series A financing. OMERS Ventures led the round with participation from Georgian Partners, Radical Ventures, Real Ventures, Silicon Valley Bank and Tim Draper, bringing the company’s total investment to date to $41 million.