Understanding and control of the behaviour and interactions of light and matter in terms of quantum mechanics in optical and atomic systems, and the fundamental science of generation, use and manipulation of quantum information.
Theory and experiments to understand and control the behaviour and interactions of light and matter in terms of quantum mechanics. The ability to manipulate and use quantum information within these and other systems enables the performance of tasks that would be unachievable in a classical context.
This research area includes:
- quantum information processing
- quantum metrology
- quantum cryptography
- quantum optical systems
- cavity quantum electrodynamics
- quantum optomechanics
- quantum thermodynamics
- quantum state characterisation.
There is strong crossover with the Quantum devices, components and systems research area.
The UK has world-leading capability in this area and we will focus on project-based research that delivers cutting-edge science and supports current research leaders. We will encourage risk and ambition, to ensure that previous investment in the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme (UKNQTP) does not adversely affect the more fundamental, blue-skies research that must be sustained to underpin future innovation.
In particular, we will encourage collaborative, ambitious projects which foster emergent areas. Skills and knowledge transfer within the discipline and also with other disciplines should be driven through greater mobility of early career researchers between disciplines and research groups, and through shared training between this research area and complementary areas in Engineering, Information and communication technologies (ICT) and technology transfer disciplines.
Large EPSRC investments should be aligned to deliver underpinning science feeding into the UKNQTP, or promote crossover with other fundamental and applications-based disciplines. Interactions between existing groups, and between these and the UKNQTP, will maximise use of the additional capital and skills made available, accelerate new science arising from engineering advances, and allow swifter realisation of technological applications.
We will work with the community to ensure engagement with the UKNQTP, small and medium-sized enterprises, emergent quantum technologies start-ups and multinationals. Contributions to original technologies not currently being accelerated to market should be a priority in this context and the community should look for technology transfer opportunities in anticipated Innovate UK, public sector and international investments in this area.
We will monitor the balance of researchers and training in this research area’s portfolio to ensure current and future quantum technology investments do not draw all future leaders away from fundamental science. Capital expenditure should be strategic to ensure maximum use and value from existing infrastructure.