The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity has selected three industry teams to perform research and development work on a future energy-efficient superconducting computer as part of IARPA’s multi-year Cryogenic Computer Complexity program.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence said Wednesday that teams led by IBM, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon‘s BBN Technologies subsidiary received research contracts to develop a replacement for complementary metal-oxide semiconductors in high-performance computing systems.
“The power, space, and cooling requirements for current supercomputers based on [CMOS] technology are becoming unmanageable, ” said Marc Manheimer, C3 program manager at IARPA.
“Computers based on superconducting logic integrated with new kinds of cryogenic memory will allow expansion of current computing facilities while staying within space and energy budgets, and may enable supercomputer development beyond the exascale.”
ODNI said the selected teams will work on the logic and memory subsystems and plan the superconducting computer prototype under the initial phase of the program.
Through C3, the agency also hopes to achieve new developments in the areas of cryogenic memory, superconducting logic and cooling.