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Labs need funding and workforce to bridge quantum’s ‘valley of death’

By Sandra Helsel posted 08 Jun 2022

(NextGov) Alexandra Kelley, staff correspondent for NextGov interviewed Travis Humble, the interim director of the Quantum Science Center at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in article summarized here by IQT-News.

Humble described the current state of quantum technology, specifically quantum computing, as facing more of a “technology gap” instead of the tech sector’s typical valley of death. He said this is partially because of the ongoing need to ask more questions about the fundamental science belying quantum physics.

Investing in continued quantum sciences research and supporting a growing workforce are two key areas that will translate to viable quantum devices and applications.

“I don’t think that we have enough knowledge yet in this area, to jump straight to building these types of products,” he said. “In addition to the funding, the other challenge at the moment is building out the workforce that is capable of developing these ideas. Because it’s fundamental science because it’s research and development, we actually need people who have familiarity with quantum mechanics as well as the types of systems that it will be translated into.”


Sandra K. Helsel, Ph.D. has been researching and reporting on frontier technologies since 1990.  She has her Ph.D. from the University of Arizona.

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