The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) said that it is planning to establish a quantum computing applications lab in collaboration with Amazon Web Services (AWS).
Under the agreement, AWS will provide access to quantum computing hardware, simulators, and programming tools, on-demand and at no cost, under Amazon Braket programme.
Once operational, MeitY aims to offer “quantum computing as-a-service” to government ministries and departments, researchers, scientists, academia, and developers, to enable advances in areas such as manufacturing, healthcare, agriculture, and aerospace engineering, said a statement.
“We will provide scientific, academic, and developer communities access to a quantum computing development environment aligned with the government’s science and technology priorities,” said Union IT Secretary Ajay Sawhney.
“India has a rich legacy in science, technology, and innovation. We believe that India’s path forward will be driven by achieving world-class scientific solutions. Enabling our scientific community with advanced technologies plays a key role in scientific advancements and learning,” said Sawhney.
Quantum computing is an emerging field that harnesses the laws of quantum mechanics to build powerful tools to process information. It has the potential to solve computational problems that are beyond the reach of classical computers and lead to new breakthroughs that can transform chemical engineering, material science, drug discovery, financial portfolio optimization, machine learning, and much more.
Additional Secretary, MeitY, Rajendra Kumar, said, “An early and successful foundation in quantum computing is important to achieve leadership in this emerging field. The MeitY Quantum Computing Applications Lab, established with the support of AWS, is the first of its kind initiative in the world, and aims to enable India’s talented researchers to explore the unchartered applications of quantum computing, and pave the way for new discoveries and disruptions.”
The MeitY Quantum Computing Applications Lab will identify quantum computing problem statements for experimentation from among Central and state governments, research institutions, and academia. It will work with subject matter experts from the government sector to define the problem statements, and make them public, inviting applications from researchers, academia, and organizations to address them.
“Limited access to quantum computing hardware and expertise, and complex infrastructure setup and management, are challenges that scientists and researchers face today, in their quest for scientific discovery,” said Rahul Sharma, President, Public Sector – AISPL, AWS India and South Asia. “Our collaboration with MeitY to establish the Quantum Computing Applications Lab will provide the breadth and depth of AWS services to the research, academic, and scientific community to overcome these challenges and focus on innovation.”