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Quantum Computing Project Targets US Power Grid Improvements

Oak Ridge National Laboratory collaborates with IonQ to tackle US infrastructure challenges

Berenice Baker, Editor, Enter Quantum

April 17, 2024

2 Min Read
A lit-up city at night

Quantum computing company IonQ and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) are working together to explore how quantum technology can be used to modernize the U.S. power grid.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is funding the research initiative, which aims to address the challenges facing the power grid including tackling the proliferation of energy sources.

Different methods of generating electricity produce varying amounts of energy over time and the energy mix needs to adjust to meet demand. This necessitates solutions that can address both optimization and energy security challenges.

IonQ and ORNL aim to help energy companies develop practical quantum hybrid applications using classical and quantum computing.

“Modernizing the U.S. power grid is a priority; failing to do so will impact both daily American life and our national security,” said IonQ chief revenue officer Rima Alameddine.

“We believe that quantum technologies will ultimately enhance the resilience, reliability, and security of the US power grid. By partnering with ORNL on this Department of Energy project, we are working to pioneer quantum solutions to enable stronger and more efficient power systems for future generations.”

IonQ’s work is supported by the Grid Research, Integration and Deployment for Quantum (GRID-Q) project that aims to help researchers identify and better understand use cases for quantum computing, communication and sensing on the power grid. GRID-Q is part of the energy department’s grid modernization initiative.

Related:Quantum Research Targets More Efficient Solar Cells

The project will also benefit from ORNL’s quantum computing user program, which provides access to advanced quantum computers for testing real-world applications, such as control of the power grid.

“A next-generation power grid requires new operational and planning capabilities so companies can make better decisions about infrastructure investment over several decades to meet the country’s energy goals,” said ORNL project co-lead Suman Debnath.

“This collaboration will enable us to significantly accelerate grid modernization and provides an opportunity to address critical challenges in our energy infrastructure and pave the way for a more sustainable and resilient future.”

About the Author(s)

Berenice Baker

Editor, Enter Quantum

Berenice is the editor of Enter Quantum, the companion website and exclusive content outlet for The Quantum Computing Summit. Enter Quantum informs quantum computing decision-makers and solutions creators with timely information, business applications and best practice to enable them to adopt the most effective quantum computing solution for their businesses. Berenice has a background in IT and 16 years’ experience as a technology journalist.

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