Q.ANT-led quantum optics consortium wins €50 million research funding
(Optics.org) A consortium led by quantum start-up Q.ANT is set to receive €50 million in research funding. Approximately €42 million of this will come from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, while the consortium partners will contribute around €8 million.
The funding will be used to construct a demonstration and test system for quantum computer chips and other quantum computer components. This will enable the consortium to conduct research into algorithms and technologies for photonic quantum computing and prepare for industrial scale-up. Q.ANT, a subsidiary of Trumpf, recently proposed a method that could be used to fabricate extremely powerful quantum computer chips.
By creating highly specialized optical channels on silicon chips, this photonic chip process is able to transport, control and monitor quanta with virtually zero loss, even at room temperature. In future, say the developers, this will also enable the chips to be used in conventional mainframe computers.
“This funding is a clear indication of Germany’s strength as a hotbed of innovation. We’re on the cusp of the quantum computing era, and the global race to secure market share in this future technology has begun. The funds that have now been earmarked for this research alliance are a key enabler on the path toward building quantum computers in Germany,” said Q.ANT CEO Michael Förtsch.
Known as PhoQuant for short, the research project will run for a total of five years. Q.ANT is in charge of the industrial side of the consortium, which also includes 14 other German companies, applied research institutions and universities.
The PhoQuant project is part of the framework program “Quantum technologies – from basic research to market”, financed by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. A key organization participating in the project is the Jena-based Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering (IOF).