Volkswagen Group, Xanadu establish quantum simulation program for battery materials


The Volkswagen Group and Xanadu, a Canadian quantum technology company, have established a multiyear research program to improve the performance of quantum algorithms for simulating battery materials.


  • What is the goal of the program of the Volkswagen Group and Xanadu?

    According to Volkswagen Group, the goal of the program is to develop battery materials that are safer, lighter, and more cost-effective.
  • What was the aim of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Volkswagen Group and the government of Canada?

    The Volkswagen Group said that the aim of the Memorandum of Understanding signed is to promote e-mobility in the country.
  • The goal is to reduce computational costs and accelerate Volkswagen’s adoption of quantum computers to develop battery materials that are safer, lighter, and more cost-effective.

    Accurate and efficient simulation of battery materials is an industry-wide challenge that could benefit from the arrival of fault-tolerant quantum computers. Existing classical methods, such as density-functional theory, have been the cornerstone of computational chemistry for several decades, but despite their many successes, are reaching limitations on research areas critical for building better batteries.


    “With its New Auto strategy, Volkswagen enters new territory, especially when it comes to exploring opportunities along the battery value chain. Next-generation high-performance materials and electrochemical processes are key ingredients of this expedition. Working together with cutting-edge companies like Xanadu is like hopping on a speed boat heading at the next big thing: Quantum Computing might trigger a revolution in material science and optimization, key competencies to grow our in-house battery expertise” said Volkswagen Group Innovation Head Dr. Nikolai Ardey.

    The program will also investigate additional computational problems in materials discovery where quantum computing has the strongest prospects for massive impact. The partnership with Xanadu supports Volkswagen’s larger objective of becoming a data and software-driven provider of sustainable mobility and their ambition to be leaders in both battery development and quantum computing applications.

    “At Xanadu, we are pushing the frontiers of quantum computing hardware, software, and algorithms. Our goal in quantum algorithms research is to make quantum computers truly useful. Focusing on batteries is a strategic choice given the demand from industry and the prospects for quantum computing to aid in understanding the complex chemistry inside a battery cell. We are thrilled to be working alongside the fantastic team at Volkswagen to perform cutting-edge research focused on overcoming the technical obstacles in quantum algorithms that will be necessary to unlock the potential of quantum computing for battery development,” said Xanadu Head of Algorithms Juan Miguel Arrazola.

    Earlier this year, Volkswagen and the Government of Canada signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote e-mobility in the country. Both parties agreed to investigate opportunities for Canada to contribute to Volkswagen’s global and regional battery supply chains.

    The Canadian government has been investing and continues to invest heavily in quantum technologies. That investment has brought world-class talent to the country, built up the quantum ecosystem, and made Canada a leader in the quantum technology space.

    Photos from the Volkswagen Group and Xanadu

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