Welcome to Station Q

When the PC revolution began 40 years ago, Microsoft was a small company with a big vision: to put a personal computer on every desktop. Microsoft helped make that vision a reality and is now investing in the next leap in computer evolution: topological quantum computing.

Station Q represents Microsoft’s global effort to bring together the world’s mathematicians, computer scientists, quantum physicists, and engineers to build a scalable, fault-tolerant, universal quantum computer.

The roots of Station Q go back more than 15 years to when I joined Microsoft Research in Redmond to investigate the complex, yet beautiful, mathematical theory behind topological quantum computing. We brought together mathematicians and condensed matter theorists interested in topological states of matter. To foster the interactions with theoretical physicists and to start experimentally investigating the topological effects in quantum matter to perform computations, Station Q was established on the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara. Soon, Station Q Santa Barbara became the center of our research in topological phases, with research in the initial years focusing on the fractional Quantum Hall effect.

In recent years, the rapid progress of engineering in superconducting nanostructures has led to a shift of focus to hybrid superconducting/semiconducting devices in more controlled environments. A global consortium led by Microsoft has been making significant strides towards building a scalable architecture for a universal quantum computer based on these systems. To develop software for these new hardware systems, Microsoft has established a second group, QuArC, at Station Q Redmond where computer scientists, physicists and mathematicians design quantum algorithms and next-generation quantum programming platforms.  This growing consortium now extends to TU Delft, Nils Bohr Institute, University of Sydney, Purdue, University of Maryland, ETH Zurich and many other institutions around the world.

Our teams are combining theoretical insights with experimental breakthroughs to develop both the hardware and the software that will enable quantum computers to fundamentally transform the face of computing.

Come join us…

-Michael