Q-CTRL raises $35 million for quantum control

Sydney company Q-CTRL has raised $35 million (US$25 Million) in a Series B financing round Led by Airbus Ventures.

The company, whose software and hardware reduces noise and error in nascent quantum computing systems, will use the funds to develop new data-as-a-service markets powered by quantum sensing for acceleration, gravity, and magnetic fields.

Airbus Ventures is joined by a range of existing syndicate members in leading the investment round, including new investor Ridgeline Partners.

Airbus Ventures Tokyo partner Dr Lewis Pinault said: “The team’s impressive quantum control software suite enables speed and agility at a moment of rapid acceleration for the entire quantum industry.

“At Airbus Ventures, we’re particularly excited about Q-CTRL’s widening span of advanced applications and solutions, including lunar development, geospatial intelligence, and Earth observation, all increasingly critical in the global effort to address the accelerating planetary system crises we now face.”

The investment follows Q-CTRL’s oversubscribed Series A raising in July 2019 and is focused on the company’s addition of quantum sensing to its successful quantum computing business unit, and expansion of its core quantum control infrastructure software efforts.

The company is developing space-qualified quantum sensors via the Moon-to-Mars supply chain capability program and through the Australian Seven Sisters Consortium led by Adelaide nanosatellite company Fleet Space Technologies.

Its quantum sensing client portfolio already includes major commercial and government engagements with Advanced Navigation, the Australian Department of Defence, the Air Force Research Lab, and the Australian Space Agency.

Q-CTRL CEO Professor Michael J. Biercuk said: “Quantum sensing uses the fragility of quantum hardware as an asset to enable new ways to measure underground water, monitor space weather, and navigate without a global positioning system.

“However, like quantum computing, interference from the outside world degrades system performance when quantum sensors are taken from the lab out into the field.

“Combatting this degradation using quantum control is Q-CTRL’s specialty, and the team is now pioneering the development of ‘software-defined’ quantum sensors, leveraging our expertise to boost sensor performance in real field environments by orders of magnitude.”

Professor Biercuk said the new fundraise would accelerate its mission to deliver real value to the space, defence, and commercial sectors.

Picture: Q-CTRL

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