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Two international quantum networks–space & sensors–to be led at Strathclyde

By IQT News posted 15 Feb 2022

(Strath.uk) The University of Strathclyde is to lead two international quantum technology networks, following successful bids for funding. The funding, worth a total in the region of £1 million, has been announced by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation, following its Quantum Technology Call for International Networks.

The networks are:
The International Network in Space Quantum Technologies, which will tackle the challenges of taking terrestrial quantum technologies into space
The International Network for Microfabrication of Atomic Quantum Sensors, which will create a framework for collaboration on the next generation of fully-integrated atomic sensors.

The Space Quantum Technologies network is to receive £480,000 and has 37 members in 13 countries, including four industrial partners, one of which is the Strathclyde-hosted Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics.
The awards reflect Strathclyde’s status as an international leader in Quantum Technology. The University is the only academic institution that has been a partner in all four EPSRC funded Quantum Technology Hubs in both phases of funding, in: Sensing and Timing; Quantum Enhanced Imaging; Quantum Computing and Simulation, and Quantum Communications Technologies.

The Space Quantum Technologies network will develop satellite-enabled quantum-secure communication and Earth observation, with applications in combating climate change, space weather forecasting, satellite navigation and extra-terrestrial surveying.
Dr Daniel Oi, Senior Lecturer in Strathclyde’s Department of Physics, is leading the network with his departmental colleague, Dr Paul Griffin. Dr Oi said: “This is an important international initiative which will strengthen the sense of communality in the international quantum community, at Strathclyde, and among our partners.

The Microfabrication of Atomic Quantum Sensors network is to receive £480,000; it includes leading international groups in 13 institutions and three UK industrial partners. The Network for Microfabrication of Atomic Quantum Sensors will develop the next generation of miniaturised quantum sensors, with potential applications in healthcare, navigation, finance, communication and security.
RAEng (Royal Academy of Engineering) Research Fellow Dr James McGilligan, of Strathclyde’s Department of Physics, is leading the network, with his departmental colleague, Professor Erling Riis.
Dr McGilligan said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for Strathclyde to be in a quantum technologies leadership role and we will be working with some of the key global individuals and laboratories in this field.
“The deployment, and therefore the application range, of atomic sensors has been largely limited by the scalability of the systems’ constituent parts.

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