Singapore’s quantum ecosystem gets a fresh boost

National Center for Quantum Computing, Singapore

image: Teams from the Institute for High Performance Computing, the National Center for Supercomputing Singapore and the Center for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore are collaborating on the National Center for Quantum Computing.
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Credit: Quantum Engineering Program, Singapore

The Singapore Quantum Engineering Program (QEP) has launched three national platforms to increase the country’s capabilities in quantum computing, secure quantum communication and quantum device manufacturing.

Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies and Chairman of the National Research Foundation (NRF), Mr. Heng Swee Keat, spoke about the initiatives in his keynote address at Asia Tech x Singapore (ATxSG), the flagship technology event region of. on May 31, 2022.

The three national quantum platforms, which are hosted by the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore), the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and the National Supercomputing Center (NSCC) Singapore, will coordinate activities between research organizations and create public-private collaborations to put Singapore at the forefront of quantum technologies. The platforms are:

  • National Center for Quantum Computing – which will develop quantum computing capabilities and explore applications through industry collaborations;
  • Quantum Fabless National Foundry – which will support microfabrication techniques for quantum devices and enabling technologies;
  • National Quantum Security Network – which will carry out nationwide tests of secure quantum communication technologies that aim to improve network security for critical infrastructure.

Singapore has consistently invested in quantum technology research for two decades. Launched in 2018, the QEP is a national program that applies quantum technologies to solve user-defined problems. QEP is supported by NRF and A*STAR.

NRF Executive Director Professor Low Teck Seng said: “The launch of the three national platforms signals Singapore’s intent and ambition to build on our past investments in quantum technologies and take them further through close industry development. with our partner agencies. The platforms will leverage the strengths of each participating institution to build critical capabilities across the pillars of quantum computing, communication, and devices, enhancing our vibrant quantum research ecosystem.”

“Quantum technologies are attracting global interest thanks to their potential impacts across industries. The creation of three national quantum platforms in Singapore enables us to act as a larger player in the key areas of computing, communication and manufacturing. The Quantum Engineering Program supports these initiatives and other efforts to reap the benefits of Singapore’s strong heritage in quantum research,” he said. Dr Alexander Ling, QEP Director. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics at NUS and a Principal Investigator at the Center for Quantum Technologies.

The program is committing $23.5 million to the three platforms for up to 3.5 years under Singapore’s Research, Innovation and Enterprise 2020 (RIE2020) plan. These platforms will receive more support from across the research landscape.

National Center for Quantum Computing (NQCH))

The NQCH will bring together the expertise and resources of teams from the Center for Quantum Technologies (CQT) at NUS and NTU Singapore, A*STAR’s Institute for High Performance Computing (IHPC), and the National Supercomputing Center (NSCC) Singapore in building a quantum computing ecosystem. in Singapore.

Quantum computers have the potential to outperform current supercomputers in speed and power efficiency on some types of problems.

CQT and IHPC researchers will develop quantum computing hardware and middleware. They will also explore applications with industry partners in fields such as finance, supply chain, and chemistry. Meanwhile, NSCC will house a quantum computing facility and provide the supercomputing power needed to develop and train the algorithms that could eventually be used in quantum computers.

The center will also spark international collaborations and train new talent to address skills shortages in this emerging industry.

“Quantum computing is coming. The question is not ‘when’, but ‘who’ will be ready to use this technology. The approach taken in Singapore is to combine the expertise of our researchers with the support needed to achieve such a mission. The goals of NQCH, as a collective effort of CQT, IHPC, and NSCC, is to provide the infrastructure for a production quantum computer, the middleware to run it, and the quantum algorithms that solve relevant practical tasks.This effort extends to producing quantum talent beyond physical and provide reliable information to the community,” said Professor José Ignacio Latorre, Director, CQT, NUS and Principal Principal Investigator, NQCH.

“Quantum computing is a revolutionary technology that promises a significant change in the way information is processed and analyzed to solve complex problems traditionally limited by classical computers. We are pleased to contribute our expertise in computer science, high-performance computing, artificial intelligence, and optimization to this ecosystem effort to develop quantum algorithms and software. Working together with CQT and NSCC, we strive to enable many diverse classical and quantum hybrid computing applications in collaboration with industry partners.” said Dr. Su Yi, Executive Director, IHPC, A*STAR, and Co-Principal Investigator, NQCH.

“The potential of quantum computing is huge and a scientific game changer. Supercomputers will be a key resource for accelerating quantum computing research and developing the tools and algorithms needed to support new technology. The partnership between NSCC, IHPC and CQT reflects a comprehensive research commitment covering the entire value chain for the development of the quantum computing ecosystem in Singapore,” said Associate Professor Tan Tin Wee, Executive Director of NSCC and Co-Principal Investigator. of the NQCH.

National Quantum Fabless Foundry (NQFF)

The National Quantum Fabless Foundry (NQFF), housed at A*STAR’s Institute for Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE), will support the micro- and nanofabrication of quantum devices across the three QEP pillars of quantum computing, communication, and sensing. It will also develop enabling devices related to Singapore’s strategic needs in the quantum technology ecosystem.

“The National Quantum Fabless Foundry looks forward to supporting the quantum research community by developing enabling quantum devices and a quantum-based economy, and facilitating the development of quantum systems in Singapore,” he said. Dr. Manas Mukherjee, Director, National Quantum Fabless Foundry. He is a Senior Scientist at IMRE, A*STAR and Principal Investigator at CQT. “We want to act as a bridge between R&D and industry to help shape the future of microelectronics and forge more partnerships with the best manufacturing facilities in Singapore,” he added.

National Quantum Security Network (NQSN)

The NQSN, which was announced in february 2022, will conduct nationwide testing of quantum-secure communication technologies that promise strong network security for critical infrastructure and businesses handling sensitive data. The initiative, led by CQT, NUS and NTU, has more than 15 private and government collaborators. The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) is one of the collaborators.

“IMDA is working closely with our Institutes of Higher Education, industry and research partners to collaborate on the operation and implementation of the National Quantum Security Network (NQSN) in Singapore’s fiber network infrastructure. This is to ensure that Singapore’s networks and communications systems remain secure and future-proof as quantum computing technologies develop. We will continue to push the boundaries of such cutting-edge technologies so that both consumers and businesses in Singapore can benefit from them,” said Wee Sain, Director, Communications and Connectivity Engineering, IMDA.

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