Chipmaker giant Intel has been making fleet-footed decisions that will transform its Intel Core Processors. The semiconductor is dropping the ‘i’ from its latest Intel core processors because the brand is getting shortchanged on the market. Even if people are aware of what ‘Core i5’ means, only seldom do they associate it with Intel’s brand, ascribable to Apple’s emblazoning ‘i’ in the global market. 

In an extraordinary move, the computer chip manufacturer Intel will be building a new quantum processor on silicon. This latest Intel core processor is expected to offer twice as many qubits as a similar component that was unveiled last year. A few institutions and universities across the US will be able to access the hardware technology firsthand in an opportunity to research quantum computing. Intel’s latest core CPU can be a balefire to bring quantum technology imminent to becoming a reality. 

Intel’s Latest Core Processors Hope To Stabilize Quantum Computing

In October 2022, the chipmaker company dropped the 13th Gen Intel Core Desktop CPUs. Unfailingly harder, stronger, and faster than its predecessors, the ‘Raptor Lake’ 13th Gen vPro processor brought along extra security and management features in 2023. Intel expected more than 170 PCs from multiple manufacturers to harness the added features of encryption and kernel protection for virtualized instances. Some of these products have already hit the market and are reigning as the best business laptop of the year. 

Quantum computing has been progressing and leaping with breakthroughs, but the devices harboring the technology are clinging on to be jubilated as mere proofs of concepts and prototypes rather than pragmatic machines. The rationale for arriving at this standpoint is that quantum computing tech is highly prone to stability issues and experiences errors unless drafted in super-specific lab conditions. 

To realize the full potential of quantum computing and solve these mishaps, Intel’s latest core CPU – the 12-qubit quantum processing unit (QPU) has been developed to facilitate research. The 12-qubit QPU is dubbed the moniker, ‘Tunnel Falls’.

“The release of the new chip, Tunnel Falls is Intel’s most advanced silicon spin qubit chip to date. It is a step towards Intel’s long-term strategy of developing a full-stack commercial quantum computing system.”

Jim Clarke, the director of Quantum Hardware at the chipmaker stated that Intel’s latest core processor draws upon the semiconductor giant’s decades-worth expertise in transistor design and manufacturing. 

Intel Core Processors

Intel’s headquarters in Santa Clara, California. (Image Courtesy – Intel)

What Are Qubits?

Just as how ‘bits’ is the unit of calculation in a conventional computer, the quantum versions require the fundamentality of ‘qubits’. A string of traditional Bits represents one of two states which formulate into sequences capable of storing information. This helps it perform logical and simplistic tasks. Whereas, qubits are the upgraded version of the same. It represents a complex mix of states, which when entangled with other qubits, hold the power of carrying out unique operations. These operations are impractical for bits to run, owing to the time it would require. 

In the several ways to store binary information, isolating, reading, and entangling qubits, Intel’s core processors like Tunnel Falls, use tiny structures called quantum dots. These quantum dots ensnare single electrons and then store and read quantum information by virtue of a spin. 

Silicon Is The Way Forward For Quantum Computing: Intel’s Core CPUs

Many companies have been betting on QPUs that are backed by silicon. Intel has displayed reliance on the conventional processors existing in computers today and has been looking for an easy transition to quantum computing, using silicon.

“Silicon is proving to be the platform with the greatest potential to deliver scaled-up quantum computing.”

Companies like IBM and Google have approached Intel differently by creating formidable versions of the tech that can be accessed remotely by way of software. Their modus operandi does not need the distribution of the hardware itself. 

As per Intel, Qubit chips can be manufactured with just a few nips and tugs to their existing production lines. This is a distinctive aspect of Intel’s Core CPUs as other qubits in the industry herald complicated production. As more qubits are produced, the stunningly delicate and sophisticated technology can be handed over to scientists researching quantum computing technology.

“This level of sophistication has allowed us to innovate a multi-qubit regime consisting of new quantum operations and algorithms that can escalate our learning rate in silicon-based quantum systems.”

The perennial problems of developing quantum computers are the performance and error rates of QPUs, which can be solved now. 

While multiple fundamental challenges need to be untangled alongside a fault-tolerant quantum computer, Intel’s latest core processors are expected to give leeway to the academic community to hone and explore quantum computing technology. The world needs diverse approaches to tackle the problems – many studies suggest that putting quantum computers on the components utilized in conventional computing could prove to be feasible.