QSea II: Modular and scalable ion trap quantum computer

Project Info


NXP | eleQtron | ParityQC

Partner institute



Innovation Center Hamburg



We are building a modular and scalable quantum computer based on stored ion qubits.

This quantum computer is a modular and scalable advancement of the QSea I demonstrator. It is based on several modular MAGIC quantum processors with ParityQC architecture that are connected to each other. We use it to show the basic scalability to many thousands of qubits. MAGIC stands for Magnetic Gradient Induced Coupling and describes a precise, low-cost control technology for ion trap qubits. QSea II is a joint project of an industrial consortium. eleQtron builds the necessary hardware of the quantum processor. ParityQC develops an operating system and hardware-specific algorithms. NXP Semiconductors contributes the sensor solution as well as the control and regulation electronics that are necessary for embedding in classic computer environments.


The overarching goal of the consortium is to make innovations in quantum technologies socially usable and to transfer them to commercial applications. Stored ions are considered a promising and established approach in the race for a freely programmable and error-corrected quantum computer. The modular quantum computer developed by the consortium works according to the MAGIC method, in which all qubits are coupled to one another using magnetic field gradients. This method allows individual qubits to be controlled with high-frequency pulses in the microwave range, which means that commercial signal sources can be used. The ParityQC architecture allows error-corrected quantum computers to be built thanks to its high parallelizability and modularizability. NXP brings its expertise in systems electronics to the scaling and miniaturization of components and chip-based photon detection for reading quantum states.


Our modular, scalable quantum computer is based on novel surface trap chips being developed by the consortium. Basic functionalities for controlling and detecting the qubits are integrated into these ion trap chips, each of which is already a single fully functional quantum processor. Several such sub-processors are connected either by optically coupling the qubits or by transporting the ions from one microchip to another. The ParityQC architecture allows algorithms to be efficiently developed on these modular chips to solve optimization problems in a wide range of application areas. NXP adapts system and detection electronics to cryogenic environments.

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