Get them ready: QHack simulation challenge teams visit IQM

Image: A tour of the state-of-the-art fabrication facility with some IQM employees in Espoo.

Though quantum computing is still in its infancy, it is critical to provide the next generation of scientists and professionals with the knowledge and skills needed to meet workforce demands.

Therefore, to empower students, IQM collaborated with the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland to sponsor the simulation challenge at the third edition of the QHack Open Hackathon 2022, organised by Xanadu.

As part of their prize, the two top teams of the challenge, My Favourite Team and Quantum Legion, visited the IQM headquarters in Espoo, Finland, for an eye-opening practical insight into quantum computing.

The teams were given a presentation on IQM and its global presence. They also learned about co-design offerings and the development of quantum computer chips, as well as topics such as people and culture, software, and high-performance computers.

Image: A visit to IQM’s laboratory in Espoo.

Mariana Navarro Asan-Srain, a researcher and master's student in physics at Chile's University of Concepción, found the visit beneficial.

“The first word that came to my mind was impressive. It was a dream to see the practical process of producing a quantum computer and understanding it. It was amazing to listen to the experts at IQM. This visit has motivated me to keep learning,” she said.

The teams also toured IQM’s laboratory and fabrication facility. “It was fun and impressive to get inside the fabrication facility—the technical knowledge of IQM staff from different fields deeply impressed me. I have learnt a lot,” said Adrien Suau, a PhD student in quantum computing at the University of Montpellier in France.

For Charles Moussa, a PhD student in computer science at Leiden University in the Netherlands, getting inside the fabrication facility was a glimpse into the future.

“I will brag about this visit to my colleagues,” adding that: “The openness and knowledge shared by IQM staff was motivating for the future. I was happy to see the practicality of quantum computing.”

According to Andrés Damián Muoz Moller, a physics graduate with a master's degree from the University of Concepción, the visit provided him with an opportunity to interact with experts in the field.

“I am a theorist, but witnessing this was mind-blowing. What IQM has done in over three years is amazing—the people, the clean fabrication facility, and the well-planned and detailed process. The insights given by the IQM staff were interesting and gave me an idea for my next project,” he remarked.

Image: My Favourite Team and Quantum Legion teams pictured at the fabrication facility.

QHack is one of the largest quantum hackathons in the world. There were 3,280 registered participants in the online competition, who took part in coding challenges and quantum computing presentations.

This is an excellent learning opportunity provided by IQM. See you at the next QHack and other upcoming events, such as the Superconducting Qubits and Algorithms (SQA) Conference on August 25–28, 2022, in Helsinki, Finland.

If you also want to start your career while working with highly talented people, IQM is the place to be. Explore IQM job opportunities here!

Image: As part of their visit, the teams joined some IQM employees on a boat cruise around the Finnish archipelago.


Michael Sarpong Bruce is a Communications Specialist at IQM. He has over ten years of experience in marketing and communications across diverse industries, including mining, telecommunications, and insurance. He is also a former business journalist and has experience in public relations and media buying agencies.