Seizing the moment on quantum computing

Bill Bartee

Australia has been at the forefront of quantum research for decades. And while the sector has only been brought to public attention in the last few years, we’re now at a critical moment in history.

Will Australia be a net producer of quantum solutions, continuing to lead the world in its research and development, or simply a net consumer?

I firmly believe it is the former. The potential applications for quantum are vast. It’s more than work conducted in a lab with scientists. There is a tangible impact on things we rely on daily, from healthcare to transportation and everything in between.

That’s not to say it won’t come with challenges and unknowns. From an investment standpoint, navigating the quantum sector is complex. But the benefits are too immense for us to let it slide through our fingers.

According to CSIRO, quantum could become a AU$4 billion industry for Australia by 2040 and create around 16,000 new, high-value jobs.

To navigate some of the complexities, it’s important to understand the field is composed of multiple segments including computing, control, sensing, cryptography, communications, acceleration, and software. These segments don’t get the publicity quantum computing does but they are closer to reality and can be just as valuable. It’s these areas we’re looking to fuel. Here’s why.

Quantum cryptography

Quantum cryptography is a method of encryption that uses quantum mechanics to secure and transmit data with potentially huge advantages in security. Most cryptographic methods use a mathematical method to encrypt data. Quantum cryptography is different in that it relies on physics, rather than mathematics, to keep items secure.

Bad actors are getting more sophisticated and are increasing their efforts to steal information. By using the properties of quantum mechanics, we can better protect data assets.

Our investment in Quintessence Labs was made because they have built and are selling a Quantum Random Number Generator (QRNG) and a Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) system for better security.

Quantum sensing

Able to detect and measure incredibly very weak, small signals, quantum sensors are set to unlock new possibilities worldwide, including medical advancements, environmental monitoring and autonomous vehicles.

As an example, Q-CTRL recently announced the establishment of a dedicated quantum sensing division, focusing on how quantum control infrastructure software can help quantum sensors perform better in real environments – not labs. They are building software-enabled hardware in partnership with navigation and robotics company Advanced Navigation and directly engaging with defense customers to deliver new strategic capabilities.

Quantum algorithms

In quantum computing, a quantum algorithm is an algorithm which runs on a realistic model of quantum computation. A big challenge in quantum computing is understanding how to run a quantum algorithm on a quantum computer and what applications quantum computers might give a performance boost to.

As quantum computers continue to develop and performance improves, we do believe that there will be a huge acceleration of general quantum algorithms and software businesses.

This will be the key to unlocking the full potential of quantum computing, enabling us to solve complex problems and simulate systems that are currently beyond our reach.

Stay tuned

The evidence is clear that Australian quantum businesses, drawn from a world-recognised base of Australian quantum research, are shaping the global quantum industry. There are enough pathologically optimistic Australian founders bent on quantum success to ensure this opportunity is captured. This ambition, combined with the private sector and government support similar to what we’re seeing in the US and Europe, will help Australia be a net producer and global leader in quantum for decades to come.

We are optimistic and working hard to back that intent on making a dent. And with your help, we hope to see you in the quantum future.

Do you know more? Contact James Riley via Email.

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