ColdQuanta acquires Chicago firm, releases first cold-atom quantum computer

ColdQuanta acquires Chicago firm, releases first cold-atom quantum computer

It’s a big week for Boulder-based quantum-technology company ColdQuanta Inc. as the firm is acquiring Chicago quantum software developer Labs Inc., a move that paves the way for a ColdQuanta outpost in the Windy City, and beta launching Hilbert, which the company boasts is the world’s first gate-based cold-atom quantum computer.

“The quantum industry is experiencing tremendous growth as hardware and software solutions begin to take root in the real world,” ColdQuanta CEO Scott Faris said in a news release. “Since its launch, has been recognized as an innovator in quantum software and benchmarking. The combination of’s software applications and algorithms and ColdQuanta’s ground-breaking quantum computer, Hilbert, will enable customers to accelerate time to value.”

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.’s full team of quantum information scientists and software developers, including CEO Pranav Gokhale and chief scientist Fred Chong, will join ColdQuanta and lead the new Chicago office, the company said in a news release.

“With this acquisition, ColdQuanta is establishing an office in Chicago that will allow the company to tap into the tremendous talent and innovation from the University of Chicago, the Chicago Quantum Exchange and the city’s startup ecosystem,” Chong, a professor of computer science at the University of Chicago, said in the release. “Together, we will create an unstoppable force in quantum by enabling customers to maximize the performance and value of their quantum computing investments.”

ColdQuanta’s Hilbert will soon be available in beta to customers through a cloud platform, the company said.

“The commercial release of Hilbert marks an important and exciting milestone for ColdQuanta and for the cold atom quantum computing modality,” said Paul Lipman, president of Quantum Information Platforms at ColdQuanta. “Building on our recent world first in executing algorithms on a cold atom quantum computer, Hilbert demonstrates the power and scalability of atomic qubits and their promise to transform the quantum computing landscape.”

The Boulder Valley — with the University of Colorado physics department, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and some prominent quantum computing companies — has become, over the past three decades or so, the epicenter of the quantum field.

“Quantum has the opportunity to be as transformative for the world or more so than the internet,” Lipman told BizWest in a February interview.

Quantum theory attempts to explain the behavior of matter at atomic and subatomic levels.

Quantum computing uses principles of quantum theory to build machinery with capabilities that far exceed traditional computers.

Classical computers use bits that can hold the value of either 1 or 0, which severely limits their processing ability.

Quantum computers are built with qubits, which harness the quantum property of superposition to hold the value of both 1 and 0 simultaneously.

If a bit is a coin sitting on a table, with the property of heads or tails, a qubit is a coin that’s been flipped into the air and has yet to land — it simultaneously has the properties of heads and tails.

Computing power is increased exponentially with each additional qubit.

Simply put — or as simply put as can be given a field of science that’s so new and potentially groundbreaking — quantum computers are “not going to give you faster video games or better accounting software,” Lipman said. “But it will enable computers to solve important, world-changing problems that are simply impossible to solve with conventional computing capacities.”

This article was first published by BizWest, an independent news organization, and is published under a license agreement. © 2022 BizWest Media LLC.