US launches single site for the government’s quantum-focused activities

US launches single site for the government’s quantum-focused activities

It accompanies the release of a new report highlighting key areas to focus quantum research.

By Brandi Vincent

Building on a wide range of recent moves to promote and drive new quantum advancements, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy on Wednesday launched a one-stop website detailing all of its work on the topic and released a comprehensive report pinpointing crucial areas of needed research.

Quantum devices and technologies make up an emerging, but in-the-spotlight field that hones in on phenomena at the atomic scale and is anticipated to radically reshape science, engineering, communication and other realms. The Trump administration has been vocal in its view that quantum encompasses an “industry of the future” and has set forth a range of investments and government-led ventures since the president signed the National Quantum Initiative Act in 2018.

The newly unveiled website—quantum.gov—deems itself “the home of the National Quantum Initiative” and features news, resources, documents, reports, actions, and other information in one place, chronicling the government’s quantum pursuits.

In the OSTP announcement, U.S. Chief Technology Officer Michael Kratsios called it “a new digital hub for the growing quantum community to connect with wide-ranging activities underway across the federal government.”

And among the quantum-centered archives organized on the site is the latest report the government released, combining a versatile bit of feedback from officials spanning public, private, and academic sectors that honed in specifically on the nation’s quantum-focused strategy.

Published Wednesday, the Quantum Frontiers Report illuminates research areas that must be prioritized to ensure the full potential of quantum information science can be reached. According to the administration’s announcement, the report “is intended to focus and organize the entire QIS research and industrial community around key questions in the years ahead.”

The “eight frontiers” that “contain core problems with fundamental questions confronting [quantum information science, or QIS] today” and must be confronted to push forward research and development breakthroughs in the space, are listed in the report as:

✔Expanding opportunities for quantum technologies to benefit society.

✔Building the discipline of quantum engineering.

✔Targeting materials science for quantum technologies.

✔Exploring quantum mechanics through quantum simulations.

✔Harnessing quantum information technology for precision measurements.

✔Generating and distributing quantum entanglement for new applications.

✔Characterizing and mitigating quantum errors.

✔Understanding the universe through quantum information.

Kratsios reiterated that the review “lays out critical research questions for the entire U.S. innovation ecosystem to tackle in the years ahead, and will serve as an important roadmap for researchers around the country.”

Information contained in the document was collected through public requests for information, as well as roundtables, workshops and other discussions the National Science and Technology Council Subcommittee on QIS held to inform ongoing initiatives. And the report’s substance echoes the overall nascency of the broader field and work.

“Developing practical, real-world applications for these technologies that benefit other scientists and end-users in a wide range of disciplines is now an important frontier for quantum information scientists and technologists,” it reads. “Two major areas of inquiry are key for making progress along this frontier: discovering what is fundamentally possible with quantum technology … and engaging interdisciplinary QIS researchers with domain scientists and end-users early on, to work together and identify potential applications for QIS technologies and concepts in government, industry and other branches of science.”

This post originally appeared in NextGov

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