Keysight Introduces First Integrated Toolset for Quantum System Design

March 04, 2024 by Duane Benson

The QuantumPro workflow combines five key tools—schematic design, layout creation, electromagnetic (EM) analysis, nonlinear circuit simulation, and quantum parameter extraction—into one unified toolchain.

One of the key milestones for any new technology on its journey from the lab to practical use is having an accessible toolset. Keysight looks to unlock that achievement for quantum computing by introducing the QuantumPro Advanced Design System (ADS) integrated toolset.


QuantPro ADS

Keysight's QuantPro ADS is industry's first electromagnetic design environment for designing superconducting qubits. 

Prior to the introduction of QuantumPro software, quantum computing developers had to cobble together multiple software tools—few of which were designed specifically for quantum development.


Simplifying Quantum Design

QuantumPro ADS simplifies the superconducting quantum computing design process by including an end-to-end suite of design tools and a set of practical design flow examples. It manages the microwave design for input excitation and output extraction, streamlines qubit computational design, and adds powerful simulation capability. The combination of these features lowers the barriers to entry for superconducting quantum computing design.



QuantumPro combines a complete set of design and analysis tools for superconducting quantum computing. 

The Keysight tool takes the user through all key design steps: schematic design, layout, electromagnetic (EM) analysis, nonlinear circuit simulation, and quantum parameter extraction. It includes tools for both the quantum computing elements and the accompanying microwave elements. By combining these tools into one suite, engineers can spend their time working on the product rather than fighting a disparate set of discrete tools. The design cycle time is significantly reduced, and the resultant quantum computing chip is better understood and optimized.


QuantumPro Key Library and Simulation Features

QuantumPro ADS includes a library of common quantum and microwave designs to help speed the schematic phase. It includes elements such as transmons (reduced noise-sensitivity qubit) and coplanar waveguide (CPW) meander-line resonators for carrying microwave signals. By assisting in the qubit design and microwave excitation and resonation design, QuantumPro covers both the quantum computing design and the microwave data in/out sections of the design in one toolchain.


Analysis tools available in QuantumPro

Analysis tools available in QuantumPro

Simulation plays a large role in quantum computer design, and the Keysight ADS includes a method of moments (MOM) electromagnetic simulation. Using MOM reduces the computational requirements by solving for the currents on the metal surface rather than looking at the electric field in full volume. Simulation allows design optimization prior to fabricating the chip.


Connecting Microwave Engineering and Quantum Computing

Quantum computing is one of those terms that holds great meaning for the few folks deeply involved in it, and great mystery for the rest of us. The technology has a number of variants, but all rely on the quantum bit, or qubit, as the information carrier. The two states that roughly equate to binary 1 and 0 in conventional computing are referred to as “|1〉” and “|0〉” in the qubit world. Rather than on or off, the states are referenced by an energy difference called delta energy (ΔE). In rough terms, the qubit is said to be in both states until measured. When measured, it collapses to just one of its states. The resultant data comes as a probability of multiple measure/collapse cycles summed through linear combination.


A single superconducting qubit circuit example

A single superconducting qubit circuit example.

Rather than interconnect wires, microwaves are channeled into the qubits through very small waveguides to excite the qubit or read the state. Two qubits can be combined, with the summed output being an analog to a conventional logic gate. Multiple qubits can be combined in a n x n matrix to enable matrix operations. The resulting output signal is amplified through multiple stages of superconducting Josephson junctions.

The design of qubit integrated circuits and microwave engineering have a common distant ancestor. Early researchers in radar and microwaves realized that microwave energy is largely governed by quantum mechanics. Further, a superconducting quantum qubit can be thought of as a microwave resonator. Microwave energy is used to electromagnetically excite the qubit, and coupled microwave energy is used to read the qubit spin.


Faster, Easier Optimized Design

By introducing the first integrated toolset for superconducting quantum computing design, Keysight has opened a door into the future of quantum computing. The fully-integrated system—including library models, design examples, and robust simulation—takes the design out of the world of inaccessible and exotic and opens it to the conventional, disciplined engineering world.



All images used courtesy of Keysight Technologies.