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NIST’s QEDC Launches New Committee Focused on National Security Applications of Quantum Science

By IQT News posted 26 Oct 2020

(BreakingDefense) The NIST’s Quantum Economic Development Consortium has just launched a new research committee focused on national security applications of quantum science, with an eye to identifying specific uses, standards and enabling technologies, says Celia Merzbacher, QEDC’s deputy director.

NOTE: Carl J. Williams, Deputy Director of NIST’s Physical Measurement Laboratory Has Agreed to Speak on “Quantum Policy in Europe” Oct 30

QEDC on Sept. 16 announced its steering committee members: Boeing, ColdQuanta, Google, IBM, QC Ware and Zapata Computing, as well as NIST and the Department of Energy. The consortium now boasts almost 200 members, from small startups to major defense contractors Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, BAE Systems, L3Harris and Honeywell. It also includes all of DoE’s national laboratories and 32 universities from across the country.
The QEDC was launched under the National Institutes of Standards and Technology, which is overseen by the Commerce Department, to implement the December 2018 National Quantum Initiative Act. The law directed NIST to convene a consortium to “identify the future measurement, standards, cybersecurity and other needs that will support the development of a quantum information science and technology industry,” explains a NIST press release.
Quantum science is one of DoD’s modernization priorities spearheaded by the Office of Research and Engineering. Over the past several years, long-simmering interest within the national security community in quantum science has been elevated due to concerns about Chinese achievements.

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