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Accenture Labs has patented a method for identifying workloads suitable for quantum computing applications, which the company believes will span scientific and business use cases.

Accenture Labs, the IT services firm’s R&D arm, is continuing its push into quantum computing, with a focus on identifying appropriate applications for this emerging technology.

Patent activity over the past few months sheds light on the organization’s direction. In December 2018, Accenture announced it received a U.S. patent for its method of harnessing quantum computing and classical computing to address business challenges. The patent covers a “multistate quantum optimization engine” that runs multiple simulations at the same time to find the best way to solve a particular problem.

In July 2019, Accenture said it was awarded a patent for a “quantum computing machine learning module.” The module trains AI models to determine which computational tasks should be handled via quantum computing, as opposed to classical computing methods. The module then routes a computational task to the appropriate computing resource.

Accenture’s latest patented quantum computing approach aims to find the cost-performance sweet spot for a particular workload.

“The patent is really about understanding and creating systems that allow us to deal with the computational diversity that is available today,” said Carl Dukatz, principal director in Accenture’s Quantum Computing practice, which is exploring quantum computing together with Accenture Labs. “Specifically, this one doubles down on adding quantum computing to the mix.”

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