A Feb. 2, 2015 news item on Nanotechnology Now features D-Wave Systems (located in the Vancouver region, Canada) and its recent funding bonanza of $28M dollars,
Harris & Harris Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:TINY), an investor in transformative companies enabled by disruptive science, notes the announcement by portfolio company, D-Wave Systems, Inc., that it has closed $29 million (CAD) in funding from a large institutional investor, among others. This funding will be used to accelerate development of D-Wave’s quantum hardware and software and expand the software application ecosystem. This investment brings total funding in D-Wave to $174 million (CAD), with approximately $62 million (CAD) raised in 2014. Harris & Harris Group’s total investment in D-Wave is approximately $5.8 million (USD). D-Wave’s announcement also includes highlights of 2014, a year of strong growth and advancement for D-Wave.
A Jan. 29, 2015 D-Wave news release provides more details about the new investment and D-Wave’s 2014 triumphs,
D-Wave Systems Inc., the world’s first quantum computing company, today announced that it has closed $29 million in funding from a large institutional investor, among others. This funding will be used to accelerate development of D-Wave’s quantum hardware and software and expand the software application ecosystem. This investment brings total funding in D-Wave to $174 million (CAD), with approximately $62 million raised in 2014.
“The investment is a testament to the progress D-Wave continues to make as the leader in quantum computing systems,” said Vern Brownell, CEO of D-Wave. “The funding we received in 2014 will advance our quantum hardware and software development, as well as our work on leading edge applications of our systems. By making quantum computing available to more organizations, we’re driving our goal of finding solutions to the most complex optimization and machine learning applications in national defense, computing, research and finance.”
The funding follows a year of strong growth and advancement for D-Wave. Highlights include:
• Significant progress made towards the release of the next D-Wave quantum system featuring a 1000 qubit processor, which is currently undergoing testing in D-Wave’s labs.
• The company’s patent portfolio grew to over 150 issued patents worldwide, with 11 new U.S. patents being granted in 2014, covering aspects of D-Wave’s processor technology, systems and techniques for solving computational problems using D-Wave’s technology.
• D-Wave Professional Services launched, providing quantum computing experts to collaborate directly with customers, and deliver training classes on the usage and programming of the D-Wave system to a number of national laboratories, businesses and universities.
• Partnerships were established with DNA-SEQ and 1QBit, companies that are developing quantum software applications in the spheres of medicine and finance, respectively.
• Research throughout the year continued to validate D-Wave’s work, including a study showing further evidence of quantum entanglement by D-Wave and USC [University of Southern California] scientists, published in Physical Review X this past May.
Since 2011, some of the most prestigious organizations in the world, including Lockheed Martin, NASA, Google, USC and the Universities Space Research Association (USRA), have partnered with D-Wave to use their quantum computing systems. In 2015, these partners will continue to work with the D-Wave computer, conducting pioneering research in machine learning, optimization, and space exploration.
D-Wave, which already employs over 120 people, plans to expand hiring with the additional funding. Key areas of growth include research, processor and systems development and software engineering.
Harris & Harris Group offers a description of D-Wave which mentions nanotechnology and hosts a couple of explanatory videos,
D-Wave Systems develops an adiabatic quantum computer (QC).
Electronics – High Performance Computing
Traditional or “classical computers” are constrained by the sequential character of data processing that makes the solving of non-polynomial (NP)-hard problems difficult or potentially impossible in reasonable timeframes. These types of computationally intense problems are commonly observed in software verifications, scheduling and logistics planning, integer programming, bioinformatics and financial portfolio optimization.
D-Wave develops quantum computers that are capable of processing data quantum mechanical properties of matter. This leverage of quantum mechanics enables the identification of solutions to some non-polynomial (NP)-hard problems in a reasonable timeframe, instead of the exponential time needed for any classical digital computer. D-Wave sold and installed its first quantum computing system to a commercial customer in 2011.
To function properly, D-wave processor requires tight control and manipulation of quantum mechanical phenomena. This control and manipulation is achieved by creating integrated circuits based on Josephson Junctions and other superconducting circuitry. By picking superconductors, D-wave managed to combine quantum mechanical behavior with macroscopic dimensions needed for hi-yield design and manufacturing.
It seems D-Wave has made some research and funding strides since I last wrote about the company in a Jan. 19, 2012 posting, although there is no mention of quantum computer sales.