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Tech Mahindra, Mahindra University to set up lab for Metaverse, quantum computing

Tech Mahindra and Mahindra University have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to set up a new ‘Makers Lab’ for research and development in quantum computing, explainable artificial intelligence, and Metaverse.

Tech Mahindra already has 10 Makers Lab across the world and the new unit at Mahindra University will be the 11th facility globally and second in Hyderabad.

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Emphasising the need to focus on development of quantum computing, Tech Mahindra MD and CEO CP Gurnani said, the industry is looking at data explosion with growth in cloud computing, data centres, and 5G driving the change in the present computing system.

“I think the basics of quantum computing is quantum physics. Quantum physics clearly shows there is always this inflection point and then after that, either the current hardware or the quant developers will be able to suddenly create magic. My only personal belief is that the pressure on the systems will come in because of the data explosion,” he said.

Mahindra University Vice Chancellor Yajulu Medury said that one of the best things about the MoU is that it is an academia-industry collaboration.

“We have a lot of faculty in quantum physics, AI area, etc., but this is actually work getting channelised into the forefront of industry-driven areas. Whether you talk about quantum computing, 5G, our faculty is now able to work with Tech Mahindra Makers Lab and other people and look at various ways of actually taking more industry-oriented work,” Medury said.

As a part of the partnership, the students of Mahindra University will get an opportunity to work on intellectual properties made within the Makers Lab and get deployed in R&D projects on the campus.

The students will also collaborate with coding groups like Enigma within the university to get access to projects, internships, and employment opportunities.

Tech Mahindra Global Head for Makers Lab, Nikhil Malhotra, said, quantum computing is at a very nascent stage and there’s a lot of noisy structure coming in.

“This partnership is all about what is the future of Quantum Technology. We are seeing two or three major things. One is in the drug design industry because we are essentially seeing that quantum can actually take over the space for molecule designs much better than the current AI systems. That’s a huge huge market in terms of the drug design industry,” he said.

Makers Lab will focus on the effect of quantum on image optimisation for satellites, etc., and explore work on explainable AI(artificial intelligence) in collaboration with Mahindra University, Malhotra said.

Explainable AI helps in presenting data in a manner that can be understood by humans.

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