PASQAL and University of Chicago Announce Neutral Atoms Quantum Computing Research Collaboration Agreement

Published by

Karg W Lee


November 29, 2022

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Boston, November 28, 2022– PASQAL, a leader in neutral atoms quantum computing research headquartered in Paris, today announced a collaboration agreement with Professor Hannes Bernien at the University of Chicago. The collaboration aims to advance neutral atom quantum computing.  PASQAL and Bernien will accomplish this by developing new techniques for enabling high-fidelity qubit control.

Bernien is a professor of molecular engineering at the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering at the University of Chicago, a world expert in quantum many-body physics and quantum information processing, and a recipient of the 2022 New Horizons Prize by the Breakthrough Prize Foundation.

PASQAL has a long history of academic collaboration. Its core technology, which focuses on atomic qubits trapped in an array of laser beams, arose from the Nobel Prize winning work undertaken by co-founder Alain Aspect. The partnership with Bernien’s lab is the company’s first R&D collaboration with researchers at a U.S. university. Interactions between PASQAL and Bernien were originally nucleated as part of a workshop held last Spring and jointly organized by the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering and the Chicago Quantum Exchange at the University of Chicago’s center in Paris on the subject of innovation and entrepreneurship in quantum information sciences.

“We are proud to partner with the talented research team under Prof. Bernien to push forward the superior scalability and the superior performance of neutral atom quantum computing to accelerate the delivery of practical quantum advantage to our customers,” said Loic Henriet, Chief Technical Officer of PASQAL.  “PASQAL serves customers around the globe and we aim to collaborate with the brightest minds in neutral atom quantum computing.”

Quantum Engineering, one of four interdisciplinary themes that make up The University of Chicago Pritzker School of Molecular Engineeringcomprises skilled faculty, research groups, and students engaged at the frontier of quantum information processing, exploring new ways of programming and designing systems as well as educating others about the technology. The Chicago Quantum Exchange, also anchored at Pritzker Molecular Engineering, is a highly collaborative effort that includes members and partners across the globe.

Says Bernien, “Finding new ways for academia and industry to work together will help us overcome some of the biggest challenges in quantum computing. Our collaboration is great example of this and I am excited about working together with PASQAL to advance Neutral Atom Quantum Computing.”

About the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering

The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering (PME) at The University of Chicago is the first school of molecular engineering in the country and stands apart as a significant driver of change – advancing solutions-based research and education aimed at addressing some of humanity’s most pressing challenges. PME’s distinctive organizational structure propels that mission, with research and education centered around problem-solving themes rather than departments. Our renowned faculty embrace a deeply collaborative approach supported by a robust ecosystem of regional partners and national laboratories, including Argonne National Laboratory. The school’s multiple degree programs are designed to prepare the next generation of scientists and engineers as actors of societal betterment – intellectually rigorous and fundamentally interdisciplinary.


PASQAL builds quantum computers from ordered neutral atoms in 2D and 3D arrays to bring a practical quantum advantage to its customers and address real-world problems. PASQAL was founded in 2019 by Georges-Olivier Reymond, Christophe Jurczak, Professor Dr. Alain Aspect, Nobel Prize Laureate Physics, 2022, Dr. Antoine Browaeys, and Dr. Thierry Lahaye. PASQAL has secured more than €40 million in financing, combining equity and non-dilutive funding.