European program to build world’s first quantum internet ecosystem launched

Thema:
Quantum technologies
14 October 2022

The European Commission has approved a program of the Quantum Internet Alliance (QIA) to develop a Quantum Internet ecosystem in Europe, a potential world-first prototype. Quantum internet technology holds enormous promise for society, industry, and science, for example in providing reliable and secure communication.

Prototype

The Quantum Internet Alliance (QIA), led by QuTech—a collaboration between the TU Delft and TNO—will implement a seven-year program with the aim of developing a prototype network. The objective is to build two metropolitan scale networks containing quantum processors and photonic clients, connected by a long-distance fiber backbone using quantum repeaters. This is to demonstrate the ability for inter-networking and will pave the way for industrial scaling towards a quantum internet that connects many more metropolitan networks.

In this first phase, the goal is to identify several pilot use cases that can be showcased on early stage quantum internet technology. The first phase of the program, which will run for 3,5 years from October 2022, has a total budget of 24 million euros.

Quantum Internet Alliance

Founded in 2017, QIA is an established world-leading team consisting of 40 partners, including academic institutions, telecom operators, system integrators and quantum tech startups from across Europe. Their common goal is to address all challenges towards building a world-first prototype of a large-scale quantum network in Europe. In recent years QIA has laid the foundations for achieving a prototype network. This includes the first multi-processor quantum network in the lab, the first quantum software and network stack, and a state-of-the-art quantum repeater system for achieving long-distance quantum communication in the future.

QuTech, as founding partner of the Quantum Internet Alliance, is part of the Dutch Quantum Technology Ecosystem in Delft, which plays a leading role in quantum technology worldwide. Just this week an evaluation commission recognized QuTech’s activities in several fields within quantum computing and the quantum internet as being of world quality.

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