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European Initiative Fosters Quantum Technologies

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The European Commission announced the first winners of the Quantum Flagship today. The €1 billion ($1.1 billion) funding initiative will support large-scale and long-term research and innovation projects directed at transferring quantum physics research from the lab to the market through commercial applications.

Illustration of a quantum computing domain.
Illustration of a quantum computing domain. The Quantum Flagship, a 1 billion, 10-year initiative, launched in Vienna on October 29. Courtesy of the European Commission.

Over the next 10 years, the initiative aims to bring disruptive quantum technologies to the scientific arena by bringing forward new commercial opportunities addressing global challenges, providing strategic capabilities for security, and seeding yet unimagined applications for the future.

The initiative has divided all topics in five main areas of study: quantum communication (QComm), quantum computing (QComp), quantum simulation (QSim), quantum metrology and sensing (QMS), and basic science (BSci).

The first three-year phase of the Quantum Flagship, named the ramp-up phase, runs from October 2018 to September 2021. It will fund projects with an overall budget of €132 million, with the goal of pushing the field to its farthest frontiers.

From the 140 submitted proposals, 10 were for QComm, 11 for QComp, six for QSim, 22 for QMS, 90 for BSci, and one for a Coordination and Support Action. Twenty projects, involving over 500 researchers, have been selected to be executed during the first three years.

The quantum computer grants went to consortia pursuing two of the leading approaches for the technology: superconducting circuits and individual ions electromagnetically trapped in a vacuum.

In the quantum communications arena, one grant went to the Quantum Internet Alliance, a consortia of 12 institutions and companies from around Europe, to develop a continent-wide quantum teleportation network.

Other grants announced include a range of projects, each inevitably containing a "Q" in its name, from PhoQuS to UNIQORN. Some of the proposed technologies are relatively close to market applications, including ultraprecise, portable atomic clocks and chip-sized devices that produce random numbers for use in secure networks.

The overall initiative will involve the quantum community at large, with over 5000 European researchers in academia and industry.

For a complete list of winners of the first phase of the Quantum Flagship visit

Photonics Spectra
Jan 2019
The science of measurement, particularly of lengths and angles.
BusinessEurope Quantum Technology Flagshipfundingquantum computingquantum simulationquantum metrologymetrologySensors & DetectorsEuropean Commissionlight speed

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