• Project supports sustainable buildings.
    Project supports sustainable buildings.

A collaborative project leveraging quantum computing has taken an important step in the realm of sustainable building design.

This initiative, a quantum proof of concept (qPoC) spearheaded by VINCI Energies, DIANE, uptownBasel, QuantumBasel and D-Wave, optimises the design of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems for complex buildings.

The project's first phase successfully transformed the complex HVAC network generation problem into a constrained quadratic model (CQM), potentially efficiently solvable by D-Wave's quantum-classical hybrid solvers.

This marked a clear step away from traditional computational methods to a more innovative, quantum-classical hybrid approach.

The implementation and experimentation phase saw the CQM translated into Python code and processed by D-Wave’s hybrid solvers. These solvers, utilizing using both classical and quantum devices, identified superior HVAC network designs, outperforming the existing data-driven method in significant ways.

Notably, the new approach yielded solutions more quickly with shorter duct lengths and fewer construction elements, such as elbows. In addition, subject matter experts from VINCI Energies visually and manually inspected these solutions, confirming their superiority in terms of quality.

Importantly, these results were based on one representative building plan and diverse HVAC systems, setting the stage for broader application in the industry.

A crucial factor in the project's success was the interdisciplinary team. Team members from Europe (Switzerland, France, Germany) and North America (Canada, USA) brought specialized knowledge and experience, resulting in rapid progress and efficient problem-solving.

This global team operated seamlessly through collaboration tools, demonstrating the power of virtual teamwork in achieving cutting-edge innovation.

As the project moves forward, the focus will shift to translating these technical improvements into tangible business impact, such as reduced computation time and less manual engineering effort.

This quantum computing project stands as a testament to the power of collaborative innovation in driving sustainable and efficient solutions in building design.

It marks another important step towards a more sustainable future, in which human expertise and technology join forces to create environmentally friendly and cost-effective building solutions.