Science and Tech

What is a quantum computer really used for?

IBM's quantum computer exceeds the capabilities of a supercomputer, expected to be used in 2 years

Within the world of computing and technology, quantum computing is establishing itself as an innovative force that promises to revolutionize the way we understand and use computing systems.

Today, its development is in full swing, and its importance lies in the constant search for great advances that bring us closer to the future of computing, since experts look for this equipment to be useful for non-quantum things.

But what makes quantum computing so special? To understand this, it is crucial to understand the fundamental difference between conventional and quantum computing systems. Since these They are supercomputers that have the potential to solve complex problems.

How do quantum computers work?

It should be noted that while conventional computers, like the one you probably have at home, operate using the binary model, that is, with data represented by states of 0 or 1, Quantum computing is based on the principles of quantum mechanicsusing states of atoms to carry out their processes.

This is where a fascinating property of atoms comes into play: superposition. While the bits in a PC can only be in one of two states, qubits in a quantum computer can exist in multiple states simultaneously.

This, in the end, allows you to perform a massive amount of calculations simultaneously and exponentially faster than classical systems. Now, you may be wondering what a quantum computer is really for.

quantum computer


These computers vary in size and design, but they all share the ability to manipulate and process information using quantum principles. For now, they are useless, but when tools are developed to fully exploit their capabilities, they can be used for a wide range of applications.

From the simulation of chemical and physical processes to the optimization of artificial intelligence algorithms and the improvement of information security.

Big companies like IBM, Google and emerging companies They are leading the development of this technology, with machines ranging from small prototypes to industrial-scale systems. Beyond the theory, Quantum computing has the potential to transform various sectors of our society.

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Develop new drugs

Mobile sensor detects drugs, pharmaceuticals and pesticides

Drug metabolism is a crucial field in medical research, where scientists seek to understand how chemical compounds interact with the human body.

The molecular processes involved are extremely complex and difficult to simulate using conventional computational methods. This is where quantum computing comes into play, offering the ability to model molecularly detailed systems with unprecedented precision.

It should be noted that Quantum computers, in theory, can simulate the structure and behavior of moleculeswhich would allow researchers to predict how they will interact with enzymes, proteins and other biomolecules in the body.

This ability would be invaluable in the design of new drugs and therapies, as it would allow experts to identify compounds more efficiently. Furthermore, the simulation of drug-receptor interactions at the quantum level would reveal relevant information about the efficacy and possible side effects of drugs.

Fight climate change

Climate change

Deposit Photos

Develop new materials and catalysts to capture and store the carbon dioxide (CO₂) from the atmosphere is a crucial strategy in the fight against climate change, as it would help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate their impact on the environment.

Current methods are expensive, energy intensive, and have limitations in their effectiveness and scalability.but quantum computing would make a difference.

Quantum computers could be able to offer the ability to model and optimize chemical processes. This includes the simulation of CO₂ capture reactions in different environments and conditions, which would allow scientists to identify more effective materials and catalysts for this purpose.

Optimize fertilization in crops

spinach field
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Agricultural fertilization is a fundamental aspect of food production, since soil nutrients directly influence crop growth and yield.

Fertilizer management is a complex process that requires a delicate balance between plant nutrition and environmental conservation.. In this context, quantum computing would be able to offer new tools and approaches to optimize agricultural fertilization.

In this sense, Quantum computers could simulate agricultural systems at the molecular levelallowing scientists to better understand the interaction between soil nutrients, plants and microorganisms.


This includes the ability to model processes such as nutrient uptake by plant roots, nutrient release by fertilizers, and the formation of chemical compounds in soil.

With this information, farmers would be able to make more informed decisions about the type, amount and timing of fertilizer applicationthus optimizing crop yields and reducing nutrient waste and water pollution.

Alternative battery cathodes

quantum battery


Battery cathodes play a crucial role in energy storage, from electronic devices to electric cars and renewable energy storage systems. However, traditional materials used in cathodes have limitations in terms of capacity, charging speed and durability.

This is where quantum computing would come into play, finding a way to apply it to this need would offer the ability to design and optimize alternative battery cathodes with improved properties.

Quantum computers would have the ability to simulate the structure and behavior of materials at the atomic leveland a wide range of chemical compositions and crystal structures could be explored for battery cathodes.

This includes the ability to predict properties such as storage capacity, chemical stability and electrical conductivity, which would facilitate the development of more efficient and sustainable battery materials.

Simulate and optimize nuclear fusion reactions

Nuclear fusion


Nuclear fusion is a promising energy source that offers the potential to produce large amounts of electricity with minimal emissions of greenhouse gases and nuclear waste.

However, the key challenge is maintaining and controlling the plasma at extremely high temperatures for prolonged periods of time. Quantum computers would have the ability to model the behavior of subatomic particles and electromagnetic fields.

This includes predicting plasma stability, magnetic confinement efficiency and power generation in different fusion reactor configurations.

Additionally, quantum simulation can help identify strategies to improve the efficiency and sustainability of fusion processes, such as designing materials for reactor linings and advanced cooling systems.

Improve quantum sensors

Improve quantum sensors


In the area of ​​measurement, Quantum computing has the potential to revolutionize the accuracy and sensitivity of quantum sensorsopening a range of possibilities in various fields.

These sensors, which are already having an impact in areas such as medicine and space exploration, could be significantly enhanced thanks to quantum computers.

The sensors detect and measure various physical properties, such as magnetic fields, gravitational forces or changes in light. The information they collect is translated into classical data (0 s and 1 s) that can be interpreted by conventional computers.

However, This reading process has limitations in terms of accuracy and sensitivity. Quantum computing can intervene in this reading process in two main ways: direct reading and quantum signal processing, which would contribute to improving the precision of the measurements.

Aware of the potential of quantum computing, Google and XPrize have teamed up to offer a $5 million prize to researchers who can find new uses and applications for this technology.

With continuous development and research, this type of computers They have the power to revolutionize various sectors, from medicine and materials science to artificial intelligence and cybersecurity; However, there are still more years of development for this to become a reality.

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