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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/W027011/1
Title: International Network on Space Quantum Technologies
Principal Investigator: Oi, Dr DKL
Other Investigators:
Griffin, Dr PF
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Airbus Operations Limited Fraunhofer Institut (Multiple, Grouped) Satellite Applications Catapult
Teledyne UK Ltd
Department: Physics
Organisation: University of Strathclyde
Scheme: Network
Starts: 14 February 2022 Ends: 13 February 2025 Value (£): 480,293
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
No relevance to Underpinning Sectors
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
18 Jan 2022 Quantum Technology International Networks Prioritisation Panel January 2022 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Quantum technologies has the potential to revolutionise society by enabling new and enhanced applications for secure communication, sensing and measurement, positioning, navigation, and timing, and computation. Most of the research has concentrated on developing these technologies to work on the Earth, such as quantum key distribution through optical fibres, ground transportable or aerial quantum sensors, and quantum processors. However, by bringing the quantum advantage off this world and into space, we may begin to realise their full potential. Presently, quantum key distribution for securing communications is limited to a few hundred kilometres by the absorption of single photons in optical fibres, to reach global scale requires placing quantum light sources into orbit to operate in the vacuum of space. Quantum sensor-equipped satellites could monitor the Earth with unrivalled accuracy, vital for the fight against climate change. And quantum enhanced clocks could supercharge the next generation of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (aka GPS) and provide ultra-precise timing and positioning wherever you are. But building and putting them into orbit is a considerable challenge as payloads need to survive the rigours of launch and the harsh radiation, thermal, and vacuum environment in space.

This network brings together world experts who are developing space quantum technologies to work together to overcome these challenges. It includes academic institutions, public sector research enterprises, translational research organisations, small and large business, all combining their complementary knowledge and experience. But the high vantage point of space and the coverage it gives are not the only advantages of placing quantum technologies in orbit. Ultimately, we would like to network quantum devices using quantum entanglement. By connecting distributed quantum systems, from quantum computers, quantum sensors, quantum clocks, even quantum telescopes using entanglement, we massively increase their power. The difficulties of sending quantum signals through optical fibres are compounded for entanglement, hence the need for space-based quantum networking to weave a globe spanning quantum internet. The network of quantum researchers and engineers will work towards this grand challenge for a quantum connected world.
Key Findings
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Organisation Website: http://www.strath.ac.uk