Microsoft adds Pasqal’s neutral atomic processors to Azure Quantum

Pasqal’s Fresnel quantum computer uses the company’s technology with neutral atoms. (Paskal photo)

Microsoft’s Azure Quantum cloud computing service will add a brand new tool to its toolbox: Pasqal’s neutral-atom quantum processing system.

When the French company’s system becomes available later this year, it will provide a method of processing data that differs from the other methods offered through Azure Quantum.

“Running algorithms on Pasqal’s neutral-atom hardware opens the door to unique possibilities that no other quantum system offers,” Pasqal CEO and founder Georges-Olivier Reymond said in a press release today.

Unlike the rigid one-or-zero approach of classical computer science, quantum computing uses quantum bits, or qubits, which can essentially represent several states at once until the results are read out.

Theoretically, the quantum approach should be able to solve certain types of problems, such as network optimization, much faster than the classical approach. The technology could open new frontiers in areas ranging from traffic planning to drug development to data encryption.

Azure Quantum – and other cloud-based services including Amazon Braket, IBM Quantum, D-Wave Leap and Google Quantum AI – are already experimenting with hybrid quantum algorithms and look forward to developing full-stack, universal quantum computing systems.

The two main avenues for developing quantum hardware use superconducting circuits and ion traps. Pasqal takes a different approach, using neutral atoms that are manipulated at room temperature with laser-powered optical “tweezers.”

The company has already released a line of neutral-atom processing hardware called Fresnel, and it aims to bring a 1,000-qubit quantum processor to market by the end of 2023.

Pasqal’s customers include Johnson & Johnson, LG, Airbus and BMW Group. In January, the company announced a merger with Qu&Co, a developer of quantum algorithms and software. (Qu&Co was part of Amazon Braket’s quantum series.) More recently, Pasqal and Aramco said they would join forces to develop quantum computing applications for the energy industry.

Krysta Svore, Microsoft’s vice president of quantum software, said Pasqal’s neutral atomic processors will be a “welcome addition” to the Azure Quantum ecosystem.

Pasqal should provide users of Azure Quantum “new computational capabilities, including analog quantum computation, that open new avenues for pursuing quantum effects in the real world,” Svore said.

Pre-registration for early access to Pasqal’s quantum computers via Azure Quantum has become available today. For more information on pre-registration, please email

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