News story

Commercialising quantum technologies in the UK: apply for funding

Organisations can apply for a share of up to £20 million to develop prototype quantum devices as part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Quantum visualisation
Funding is part of the government's quantum technologies challenge.

Innovate UK has up to £20 million to invest in projects that look at how quantum technologies could be used to create devices with radically new properties for commercially-viable products and services.

The funding is under the government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, which aims to bring together the UK’s world-leading research with business to meet the major industrial and societal challenges of our time.

Prototype devices able to do new things

Advances in quantum technologies could provide a breakthrough in the fields of sensing, imaging and information exchange. These could be used to develop new medical devices, new types of sensors and better, more secure communication systems.

Projects in this competition must aim to develop and commercialise ‘second generation’ quantum prototype devices or systems. They should be able to do things that would be impossible by non-quantum means.

They must address one or more of the following:

  • improving situational awareness, including ensuring safety during transportation in hazardous conditions such as darkness, fog or dust
  • increasing productivity in deployment, improvement or maintenance of buildings or national infrastructure
  • improving identification and understanding of states and features that are impossible to see by conventional means, particularly in medical, environmental and security applications
  • supporting secure peer-to-peer transfer of data and information, such as across smart cities and environments

All projects will need to show how a device could ultimately be used by a customer and that there is a clear market in the UK.

Competition information

  • the competition opens on 18 April 2018, and the deadline for applications is at midday on 13 June 2018
  • projects must be led by a UK-based business working with other businesses, charities, public sector organisations or researchers, and involve at least one SME
  • we expect total project costs to be between £3 million and £10 million and for projects to last up to 29 months
  • businesses could attract up to 70% of their project costs
  • a briefing event will be held on 18 April 2018
Published 9 April 2018