A new project which aims to help take quantum computing from the lab to real-world applications has been backed by £3m in new funding.

Researchers from the University of Glasgow are set to lead the Empowering Practical Interfacing of Quantum Computing (EPIQC) project, which is supported by funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), part of UKRI.

Over the next four years, quantum computing and ICT researchers from academia across the UK will work together to co-create new ways to bridge the gap between current quantum computers and information and communication technologies, or ICT.

Unlike conventional digital computers, which encode information in the form of binary ‘bits’, quantum computers harness the phenomena of superposition and entanglement to encode information, unlocking the potential for much more advanced computing.

Currently, there is no overarching infrastructure to enable widespread interaction with quantum computers through information and communication technologies, as there is with digital computers. Without an established ICT structure, quantum computing cannot be extended to the devices, networking, and components that are commonplace in today’s digital world.

The EPIQC brings together researchers to work on the interface of quantum computing and ICT through the co-creation and networking activities. The collaborators will focus on three key areas of work to help overcome some of the barriers which are currently preventing the field of quantum computing from scaling up to practical applications through ICT: optical interconnects, wireless control and readout, and cryoelectronics.

Professor Martin Weides, of the University of Glasgow’s James Watt School of Engineering, is the leader of EPIQC. He said: “We’re pleased that EPSRC has chosen to lend their support to this project, which involves many of the leading quantum technology and ICT researchers and industry partners from across the UK.”

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