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News from a land down under: Australia Quantum Alliance emerges

By Dan O'Shea posted 06 Sep 2022

Australia has been a significant base for quantum innovation in recent years, from research being done at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australian National University, and other institutions, to technologies being commercialized by the likes of Q-CTRL, Quantum Brilliance, and Silicon Quantum Computing, among others.

The nation has earned a spot on the shortlist of countries leading the way globally in quantum technology development, and now it is looking to take the next step. All four of those companies mentioned above, along with diraq, Nomad Atomics, Rigetti, Google and Microsoft, have teamed with the Tech Council of Australia (TCA) to launch a new group called the Australian Quantum Alliance (AQA). The AQA’s aim is to be the “voice of the quantum industry in Australia,” and “promote, strengthen, and connect Australia’s quantum ecosystem,” according to an announcement published by the Australian Manufacturing Forum.

The AQA will help industry players contribute to the Australian Government’s Quantum Strategy, the regulation of critical technologies, the design of the proposed Critical Technologies Fund, and quantum skills and migration, the statement said. It also noted that research from the TCA found that more than 3% of quantum start-ups worldwide have originated in Australia, compared to 1.7% of start-ups on average. Australia’s quantum firms also have attracted 3.6% of all global venture capital investment in quantum, well in excess of Australia’s global GDP share of 1.6%.

Alliance founder and CEO Vikram Sharma said, “With the prowess of the TCA, we hope to collectively drive the development of a vibrant quantum industry, provide guidance to the government on the development of the industry, help corporate decision makers understand and adopt quantum technology, and build strong domestic and international partnerships for the greatest national benefit to Australia.”

Dan O’Shea has covered telecommunications and related topics including semiconductors, sensors, retail systems, digital payments and quantum computing/technology for over 25 years.

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