Making Quantum Computing matter.


We believe that world class research combined with a novel approach is the only way to achieve true innovation.

World Class Quantum Error-Correction Changes Everything

Nord Quantique is recognized as an industry leader in the field of quantum error correction. Our unique approach to developing quantum computers allows us to correct the most common types of errors (bit flips and phase flips) using bosonic codes. Which means unlike other designs, we are able to correct the majority of errors without dedicating a huge overhead of qubits to error correction. This allows us to devote the majority of our qubits to actually performing calculations. Meaning we can achieve fault tolerance and deliver useful applications with between 1,000 and 10,000 times fewer physical qubits than various other quantum computing models.

Fast Processing Times for Users Who Need Information Right Away

The superconducting quantum computers being developed by Nord Quantique also come with the necessary clock speeds to complete calculations and deliver insights to users in a practical timeframe. Potential users seeking to perform advanced calculations using deep circuits and complex algorithms will be pleased by how quickly these computations can be completed. Our approach was designed to make quantum computing both accessible and practical for large industrial and government users who need to run their calculations quickly and extract reliable insights from the data.

A Clear Path for Scaling to Fault Tolerance

Nord Quantique plans to quickly scale its quantum system to fault tolerant levels, delivering a machine with at least 100 logical qubits no later than 2028. This is achievable because few errors combined with fast calculation speeds means the road to useful fault-tolerance is shorter since there is no massive overhead of qubits required for error correction. This more readily enables reliable operation of useful quantum computers with a wide array of industry applications.

We’re consistently reviewing the global quantum computing landscape, and we truly believe that Nord Quantique has one of the most promising technical roadmaps to realize fault-tolerant quantum computing. The rigorous support they receive from the world-class Sherbrooke quantum ecosystem is key in helping them compete against the tech giants of the world.
Charles Lespérance,
Partner, Deep Tech Venture Fund at BDC Capital

For quantum computers to deliver on their potential of computing power exponentially greater than today’s most powerful supercomputers, the systems inside these machines must operate in a ‘quantum state’ to leverage ‘quantum effects’. These states are very delicate, and often last only a fraction of a second. In many cases, depending on the machine’s design, these quantum states must be generated inside a special dilution refrigerator, at temperatures close to absolute zero.

Changing temperatures, magnetic fields, electronics used to control qubits (the bits that power quantum computers) and a host of other factors can all cause interference with these states, known as ‘noise’. That noise disrupts the machine operating in the required quantum state by causing errors on a significant portion of its qubits. To address this, makers of quantum computers have dedicated extra qubits to the correction of these errors. This redundancy helps ensure the quantum state remains intact long enough to perform the required calculations. It should also be noted that a faster quantum processor means the calculations can be performed more quickly, which in turn means that quantum states do not need to be preserved as long when using a quantum computer with faster clock speeds.

However, designing quantum computers in this way can require 1,000 to 10,000 qubits dedicated to keeping just a single qubit functioning correctly. This means that a system with 10 million qubits could have somewhere between just 10 and 100 qubits functioning correctly in a quantum state, with the balance dedicated to mitigating or correcting errors.

If that doesn’t make a lot of sense to you, you’re not alone.

Rather than using this brute force approach where millions or even billions of qubits are required to deliver on the potential of quantum computing, some innovative thinkers in the industry have begun to look at better ways of preventing or correcting qubit errors. And it was through such reflection that Nord Quantique was born.

roadmap_dark_fig_v2c.png (92 KB)

A Different Approach Yields Results

Nord Quantique is a startup spun out of Quebec’s University of Sherbrooke and its well known Institut Quantique. Their plan was never to take on the big tech companies which have been working to build these large-scale quantum systems. Rather, Co-Founders Julien Camirand Lemyre and Philippe St-Jean set out to build a better mouse trap.

Their approach was designed to reach the era of error corrected quantum computing much more quickly by building efficient machines using fewer qubits, therefore making the system easier to control and scale.

They began by first developing error correction protocols on a single bosonic qubit. Those protocols correct the two most common types of errors in quantum computing (known as bit flips and phase flips). The company’s latest results indicate that they are able to effectively reduce errors in this way, by 14% on a single qubit, without dedicating any additional qubits to error correction.


The Road Ahead

The results demonstrated by Nord Quantique are the first any company has produced at the individual qubit level to date. In fact, this Canadian startup is the first company anywhere to be able to reduce errors in a quantum system without using dedicated additional qubits to do so. This approach puts the company on track toward the development of lean and efficient quantum computers, far less complex to scale up to a size where they can provide an advantage over classical computers.

The company is now developing its first multi-qubit system and will show results from that initiative in 2024. However, preliminary simulations have shown that there are likely synergies in error correction when adding additional qubits to the existing single qubit in Nord Quantique’s system.

What this means is that Nord Quantique has a clear path to building a useful quantum computer that will not require thousands or tens of thousands of qubits dedicated to error correction. By no later than 2028 the company will build a quantum computer with 100 properly functioning ‘logical qubits’, with only a handful of additional ‘physical qubits’ acting as a redundancy to protect against any errors not already corrected.