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UK Establishes 4 Quantum Technology Hubs

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Four newly established quantum technology research hubs in the U.K. will explore advanced light detectors and more.

The £120 million project (about $148.5 million) involves 17 universities and 132 companies and is funded by the British Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. The universities of Birmingham, Glasgow, Oxford and York will lead the network.

Commercial partners include EPSRC, Innovate UK, BIS, the British National Physical Laboratory, GCHQ, Dstl and the Knowledge Transfer Network.

“This investment in quantum technologies has the potential to bring game-changing advantages to future timing, sensing and navigation capabilities that could support multibillion-pound markets in the U.K. and globally,” said Greg Clark, the U.K.’s minister of state for universities, science and cities.

Led by professor Dr. Miles Padgett, University of Glasgow hub will focus on sensing and imaging. One goal is to develop new types of camera with unprecedented sensitivity and the capacity to time the arrival of detected light. Possible applications include visualizing gas leaks, seeing through smoke and around corners, and subdermal bioimaging.

Meanwhile, the University of Oxford hub, led by professor Dr. Ian Walmsley, will focus on quantum computing and simulation for applications in drug and materials discovery.

The University of York hub, led by professor Dr. Tim Spiller, will focus on secure data transmission via quantum communications.

The University of Birmingham hub, led by professor Dr. Kai Bongs, will focus on sensing and metrology for applications from dementia research to finding underground sinkholes and archaeological treasures.

For more information, visit

Photonics Spectra
Feb 2015
The science of measurement, particularly of lengths and angles.
BusinesscamerasmetrologyResearch & TechnologyEuropeEnglandCommunicationsimagingSensors & DetectorsUniversity of BirminghamUniversity of GlasgowUniversity of YorkUniversity of OxfordEngineering and Physical Sciences Research CouncilScotlandBiophotonicslight speed

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