Applications of quantum computing

Following Watson and blockchain, quantum computing may provide the next powerful set of services delivered via the IBM Cloud.

Areas that may be revolutionized by quantum computing

Medicine & Materials

Untangling the complexity of molecular and chemical interactions leading to the discovery of new medicines and materials.

Supply Chain & Logistics

Finding the best solutions for ultra-efficient logistics and global supply chains, such as optimizing fleet operations for deliveries during the holiday season.


Financial Services

Finding new ways to model financial data and isolating key global risk factors to make better investments.

Artificial Intelligence

Making facets of artificial intelligence such as machine learning much more powerful when data sets are very large, such as in searching images or video.


Quantum and chemistry


IBM Q systems will be designed to tackle problems in business and science that are too complex and exponential in nature for classical computing systems to handle. One of the first and most promising applications will be in the area of chemistry. Even for simple molecules like caffeine, the number of quantum states in the molecule can be astoundingly large -- so large that all the conventional computing memory and processing power that could ever be built could not model it. Jerry Chow, manager of experimental quantum computing for IBM Research, explains that modeling a molecule is the key to understanding its properties -- and could lead to the discovery of new materials and medicines.

Simulating molecules

IBM scientists have developed a new approach to simulate molecules on a quantum computer that may one day help revolutionize chemistry and materials science. The scientists successfully used a seven-qubit quantum processor to address the molecular structure problem for beryllium hydride (BeH2) –the largest molecule simulated on a quantum computer to date. The results demonstrate a path of exploration for near-term quantum systems to enhance our understanding of complex chemical reactions that could lead to practical applications.

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Quantum community


IBM Q is an industry-first initiative to build commercially available universal quantum computing systems. As part of this effort, The IBM Q experience enables anyone to connect at no cost to one of IBM’s quantum processors via the IBM Cloud, to run algorithms and experiments, and to collaboratively explore what might be possible with quantum computing. Jerry Chow, manager of experimental quantum computing for IBM Research, describes the aim of this growing community working together to advance the frontiers of quantum.

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