In an era defined by unprecedented technological innovation, groundbreaking advances in AI and quantum technology continue to expand. Recently, we joined forces with NYU Tandon School of Engineering to sponsor, design and co-host an extraordinary event, the Tandon hAQathon, which challenged students to leverage the power of AI and quantum technologies (AQ) to develop unique sustainability solutions. The event, which culminated on September 30, was NYU’s first quantum hackathon and marked a significant milestone in the university's pursuit of fostering innovation and knowledge using these cutting-edge technologies.
As quantum technology research continues to gain substantial support and funding, NYU Tandon saw the need to equip its students with the knowledge and skills to participate actively in this thriving ecosystem. The Tandon hAQathon was designed to create unparalleled opportunities for students to delve deeper into AQ technologies and get hands-on experience with real quantum programming.
The oversubscribed event attracted more than 350 applicants. In the end, 43 students were selected and divided into seven teams. After several weeks of guest lectures, training, collaboration and brainstorming, the teams chose their projects, ranging from optimizing renewable energy sources to reducing carbon emissions, and began five intensive days of programming via the platform qBraid. All seven teams delivered inspiring projects, but one of them rose above the rest in the judges’ eyes…
The Winner: Team Qommute
Team Qommute’s project focused on quantum algorithms and machine learning to add Citi Bike docks at optimal locations and to implement real-time route optimization for the NYC bus system. Our congratulations go to all the members of Team Qommute for their outstanding effort: Josh Handelman, Samyam Lamichhane, Andy Lee, Erik Lee, Sarthak Malla, Sasha Malik and Aibar Talip.
Special thanks to QWorld, which led the academic instruction; NYU faculty and executives from SandboxAQ, Qrypt, Qunnect, Xanadu, and SEEQ who spoke about exciting future quantum career opportunities; and hacker prodigy/entrepreneur Reuben Paul, who spoke about his career journey and the impact of quantum computers on cybersecurity.
The Future Quantum Ecosystem Is in Great Hands
As quantum computing research continues to gain momentum, we hope to see more groundbreaking solutions and ideas emerging from institutions like NYU. Based on what we saw at the hAQathon, the future of quantum computing looks brighter than ever.
The Tandon hAQathon demonstrated that the next generation of innovators is ready to harness the power of AQ to address the world's most pressing challenges. Through our continued education outreach efforts with our global university partners, we look forward to even more exciting breakthroughs that will reshape our world and lead us into a new era of innovation and discovery.