The government is today (23 March 2015) committing up to £15 million to train the next generation of quantum engineers who will build innovative new products like 6G smartphones.
The funding – via the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) – will be used to create a number of quantum technologies ‘skills hubs’ across the UK, which will work in partnership with industry to deliver training and career development programmes for PhD students.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said:
From cameras that can see through smoke to cracking down on internet fraud, quantum technologies are taking innovation to a whole new level and offer an unparalleled opportunity to shape the next generation of high-tech products that will improve our day-to-day lives.
This £15 million investment will ensure we have the flexible, highly-skilled workforce needed to turn these futuristic ideas into a reality.
Universities, Science and Cities Minister Greg Clark said:
Quantum technologies are set to transform the way we live, pushing the boundaries of knowledge which will benefit healthcare, communications and security.
Quantum skills will allow us to bring game-changing advantages to future timing, sensing and navigation capabilities, in a sector that could be worth more than £1 billion to the UK economy. That is why we are investing up to £15 million to train specialists with the right entrepreneurial and business skills to ensure we have the talent to keep us ahead of growing international competition.
The investment comes in response to today’s publication of a national strategy to stimulate growth in quantum technologies in the UK.
Launched by the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme, the strategy highlights the billion-pound potential for the UK as a world leader in this field.
Notes to editors:
- The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) will shortly issue a call for proposals.
- The National Quantum Technologies Programme is a cross-government programme with activity supported across the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, Innovate UK, the National Physical Laboratory, Defence Science Technology Laboratory (Dstl) and Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).
- In November 2014, the programme invested £120 million in a national network of UK university-led quantum hubs. These are led by the universities of Birmingham, Glasgow, Oxford and York and focus on quantum sensing and metrology, quantum sensing and imaging, quantum computing and simulation, and quantum communications, respectively.
- These hubs include a further 13 universities and 132 companies and have leveraged over £60 million of additional direct and indirect support alongside government investment.