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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/N01488X/1
Title: Quantum Technology Capital: Epitaxy Cluster Tool to Enable Next-Generation Quantum Dots for Quantum Technology Applications
Principal Investigator: Skolnick, Professor M
Other Investigators:
Farrer, Dr I Heffernan, Professor J
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr EM Clarke
Project Partners:
Hitachi Europe Ltd Huawei Group IQE PLC
Department: Physics and Astronomy
Organisation: University of Sheffield
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 April 2016 Ends: 31 March 2019 Value (£): 2,190,826
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Communications Electronics
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
23 Oct 2015 QT Capital Call Sift panel Announced
17 Dec 2015 QT Capital Interviews Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
This is a proposal for advanced crystal growth equipment to enable the UK to take a lead in important areas of Quantum Technologies. It will enable the growth of nanometre-scale semiconductor quantum dots with world-leading properties. These properties include emission limited only by fundamental properties of the dots unaffected by the surrounding environment, and ordered arrays of dots, critical to enable scale-up and to translate the much excellent science of quantum dots to highly competitive Quantum Technologies.

The Quantum Technology applications rely on purely quantum mechanical principles such as superposition, where a system can be in two states at the same time, and entanglement where an operation at one spatial location influences another remotely, without there being any direct connection between them. Quantum dots are extremely well suited to exploiting these quantum mechanical effects (sometimes termed 'Quantum 2'). The favourable properties of III-V semiconductor quantum dots include on-demand single and entangled photon emission, ready incorporation in cavities, very long coherence and compatibility with well-developed III-V semiconductor processing technology. III-V semiconductors are familiar in everyday life as the basis of light emitting diodes, internet data transmission, and laser disk storage to name just a few. Here we turn the favourable III-V properties to enable new applications in Quantum Technologies, including as sources for secure Quantum Cryptography, quantum relays for Quantum Communications, integrated entangled sources for Quantum Cryptography and sensing, and longer-term opportunities for memories and spin chains for Quantum Networks.

The crystal growth equipment, an Epitaxy Cluster Tool, is comprised of two principal chambers, one dedicated solely to the growth of highest quality quantum dots, and the second to the advanced processing of structured templates for growth of arrays of dots with pre-determined location, enabling the realisation of very high brightness sources of single photons and of arrays essential for scale-up. The two principal chambers will be connected together by an automated loading, transfer and analysis chamber, enabling high throughput of the system, and furthermore ensuring that only highest cleanliness wafers are transferred to the ultrahigh purity chamber. The Cluster Tool constitutes an integrated suite of growth, analysis and processing features. It will provide the UK with unique experimental infrastructure to take a leading position in the translation of quantum-dot-based science into Quantum Technologies.

Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Date Materialised
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Organisation Website: http://www.shef.ac.uk