NEC and NEC Fielding Use Quantum Computers for Delivery Scheduling System: Press Releases

Tokyo, September 9, 2022 – NEC Corporation (NEC; TSE: 6701) and NEC Fielding, Ltd., a leading provider of maintenance services for ICT equipment, will launch a maintenance parts delivery planning system using quantum computing technology in the 23 wards of Tokyo from October this year.

This system reduces the planning work for next-day delivery of maintenance parts, which takes approximately two hours a day, to approximately 12 minutes, a 90% reduction that makes an important contribution to operational efficiencies.

NEC Fielding offers maintenance services whereby its customer engineers (CE) visit customer sites for repair work in the event of failure of ICT equipment and non-ICT equipment manufactured by NEC or other companies. Several hundred maintenance operations take place every day in the Tokyo area, and parts are delivered from spare parts centers according to shipping schedules prepared based on CE’s capabilities and arrival times, taking traffic conditions into account. However, in addition to various orders such as emergency response, periodic maintenance, and requests at specific times, there is an enormous combination of delivery variables such as delivery areas, part types and sizes, truck and motorcycle usage. Consequently, creating a delivery plan takes a lot of time and there are a limited number of people who can formulate these plans efficiently.

Accordingly, from February this year, NEC and NEC Fielding conducted tests using the NEC Vector Annealing Service, which enables ultra-high-speed processing of large-scale combination problems using quantum computing technologies.

As a result of the tests, it was confirmed that the delivery schedules created using quantum computing technology were equivalent to those of skilled workers. The companies are now planning a full rollout of the system for NEC Fielding on approximately 50 next day delivery schedules to improve the efficiency of the planning operations and reduce reliance on expertise.

In addition, the system is expected to not only reduce the time required to formulate delivery schedules by approximately 90%, but also reduce delivery costs by approximately 30%.

B. by reducing the number of delivery vehicles and shortening travel distances by expanding the scope of work and the target areas to which it is applied.

In the future, the two companies not only want to reduce the workload of the employees involved in creating delivery schedules for maintenance components, but also reduce costs and CO2 through improved delivery efficiency.

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