QuTech consortium receives 10 million euros




for the development of the quantum internet
A consortium led by the Dutch research institute for quantum technology QuTech receives a ten million euro grant from the European Commission for the development of quantum internet. The UvA receives money for compact atomic clocks.

The European Commission has announced the start of The Quantum Flagship , in which 20 projects have been chosen to give Europe a leading position in the field of quantum innovation. The initiative spans ten years and a total amount of 1 billion euros is involved.

One of the chosen projects is the Quantum Internet Alliance . This alliance consists of twelve European quantum research groups and more than twenty high-tech companies under the direction of the QuTech institute from Delft. The goal is to come to a blueprint of a European quantum Internet. The alliance develops the basic components needed for such a network, such as quantum repeaters, nodes and the network stack.

“We are now very close to building the first quantum networks with three or four nodes,” says Stephanie Wehner, coordinator of the Quantum Internet Alliance. The subsidy must help to accelerate development. The alliance does not focus on quantum key distribution by sending photons via fiber, but on entanglement. The entanglement of particles can be maintained over a large distance and ensures that an adaptation of one qubit instantaneously affects the entangled other qubit. This opens up possibilities for clock synchronization at a distance, but also inherently secure communication. In time, the network must connect quantum computers .

In addition to the QuTech consortium, iqClock also receives a subsidy of 10 million euros. This is a European consortium led by physicist Florian Schreck from the University of Amsterdam. With his project he focuses on the development of compact quantum clocks. These must be an alternative to the large and difficult to make optical atomic clocks.

In those optical atomic clocks, vibrations of atoms to capture a very accurate frequency form the basis. “That frequency is transferred to an optical laser The fine tuning of the laser frequency to that of the atoms is not easy, but here in Amsterdam we have discovered a way to implement this idea more easily, by allowing the vibrating atoms to form the laser beam themselves. “, says Schreck. He now wants to build such a super-radiant laser with his team. Reducing technology should eventually enable integration into satellites. The physicist also thinks of an application for the synchronization of telecommunication networks, so that these networks can perform much better.

An ultracold cloud of strontium atoms is captured in a vacuum chamber for iqClock research, surrounded by electromagnets and optics for laser cooling.


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