Great success for Hamburg: In Hamburg, companies and start-ups develop quantum computers based on ion traps

DLR awards contracts for quantum computers with a total volume of €208.5 million

Hamburg’s science and business location wins forward-looking contract to build quantum computers: The German Aerospace Center (DLR) is funding the development of quantum computers based on ion traps with a total volume of 208.5 million euros. In the future, scalable quantum computers will be created at the DLR Innovation Center in Hamburg. Hamburg is thus sustainably positioning itself as a leading quantum technology location in Germany and Europe.

“For the realisation of qubits based on ion traps, DLR is awarding contracts for five projects as part of its quantum computing initiative. This technology approach is considered promising and is now to be advanced in a targeted manner. We are thus taking a further step towards a programmable, fault-tolerant quantum computer,” says Prof. Dr.-Ing. Anke Kaysser-Pyzalla, Chair of the DLR Executive Board. “The close cooperation between industry and science creates synergies that strengthen the quantum computing ecosystem and thus also open up new opportunities for start-ups.”

Quantum computing location Hamburg: Construction and development of quantum computers at the DLR Innovation Center Hamburg

Over a period of four years, prototype quantum computers will be built at the DLR Innovation Centre Hamburg in sub-projects with different orientations. For this purpose, the companies are closely integrated into the infrastructure of the Innovation Centre, benefit from the immediate proximity to the DLR working groups and will use offices, laboratories and a clean room in the future. This further strengthens Hamburg’s quantum technology ecosystem.

In the start of operation of the first sub-project planned for the end of 2023, NXP Semiconductors Germany (Hamburg), eleQtron (Siegen), Parity Quantum Computing Germany (Munich) have been commissioned with a so-called demonstrator construction of ten ionic qubits, which is intended for initial application tests. Two further sub-projects comprise a modular, scalable construction of prototype quantum computers with at least 50 fully functional qubits. These are each being developed by proprietary systems from Universal Quantum Germany (Düsseldorf) and the consortium QUDORA Technologies (Braunschweig) /NXP Semiconductors Germany (Hamburg). Furthermore, Universal Quantum Germany (Düsseldorf) and the consortium NXP Semiconductors Germany (Hamburg)/eleQtron (Siegen)/ Parity Quantum Computing Germany (Munich) have been commissioned with a modular development of a quantum computer prototype. In the consortium around NXP Semiconductors Germany (Hamburg), the Technical University of Hamburg is also involved in microsystems technology, high frequency technology and signal processing for hardware and software. In addition to hardware development, the development of applications is also to be advanced.

These future-oriented developments meet a wide potential field of application in science and industry and thus expand Hamburg’s innovation strategy.

Hamburg’s First Mayor Dr. Peter Tschentscher: “Hamburg is a leading location for quantum technology in Europe. The city offers the best conditions for excellent basic research, application-related testing and the industrial use of new technologies. The Senate is strengthening DLR’s activities with its own funds, among other things for the training of specialists through the “Hamburg Quantum Computing School (HQS)” and a special application project for maritime logistics.”

Senator for Economic Affairs Michael Westhagemann: “Hamburg offers excellent starting conditions in the field of quantum computing with scientific excellence, key companies in industry and application sectors that are strongly represented at the location, such as logistics or life sciences. The disruptive change potential of quantum computing is comparable to the development of digital computers in the 1970s or artificial intelligence at the beginning of the 21st century. The Hamburg Senate therefore supports this development very actively. I am pleased about the success of the consortia in the awarding of federal contracts by DLR. For me, this is proof of the performance strength of Hamburg’s quantum computing ecosystem, which is thus once again decisively strengthened.”

Science Senator Katharina Fegebank: “What a week for quantum computing in Hamburg! The extensive funding from the federal government is fantastic news for Hamburg as a centre of science: over the years, our outstanding universities and our world-leading research institutions have pooled excellent scientific expertise in quantum computing that is unparalleled internationally. In addition, there is close networking and cooperation with industry and business. All players want to work together to advance quantum technology in Hamburg, which is our locational advantage. This week, the Senate further strengthened the quantum computing ecosystem at the location with an amount in the double-digit millions. Together with the funding supplement from the BMWK, we are thus on our way to the top class of quantum technology.”

Lars Reger, NXPs Chief Technology Officer and Chairman of the Board of NXP Germany GmbH: “We are pleased that quantum computers are now to be developed and built under our roof here in Hamburg together with DLR and partners, and that we can contribute our many years of expertise in highly innovative electronics and sensor technology. With our technologies for chip-based detection logic as well as control and regulation electronics, we are helping to make quantum computers with their enormous computing power feasible more quickly and to fit them securely into the existing infrastructure of computers and terminals.”

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Timm-Giel, President of the Hamburg University of Technology (TU Hamburg): “This success for TU Hamburg’s application is a milestone for Hamburg as well as for the further development of TU Hamburg. Quantum computing is an important key technology of the future. With its help, problems can be solved, for example in logistics, that could not be calculated with today’s computers, or only inaccurately. With this project, Hamburg is playing in the first league of quantum computing in Germany. An entire ecosystem for quantum computing is being created in Hamburg. On the scientific side, it includes not only theoretical physics at the University of Hamburg, but also microsystems technology, high-frequency technology and computer science at our TU Hamburg. This is also where the new TU endowed professorship from Fujitsu comes in. It is complemented by partners in industry and non-university research institutions. The new project strengthens the important cooperation between the TU Hamburg and industry. Our congratulations go to the consortium team for their great success. This also marks a new chapter for research at TU Hamburg.”

Questions from the media:

German Aerospace Center e.V.
Katja Lenz, Press Office
Telephone: 02203 601-5401
E-Mail: katja.lenz@dlr.de

Hamburg Quantum Innovation Capital
Benedikt-Sebastian Mehmel
Telephone: 0171 479 2361
E-Mail: mehmel@aric-hamburg.de