$26 million to support quantum computing

Media release | 25 July 2017

The NSW Government today announced a new $26 million fund to help supercharge the development and commercialisation of quantum computing and make NSW a global hub for advanced training in this ground-breaking field of science.

Announcing the fund, Deputy Premier and Minister for Skills and Small Business John Barilaro said quantum computing could pave the way for computers to solve complex problems at speeds not possible even with the world’s fastest computers.

“NSW researchers are already pushing the boundaries in this exciting field and the new fund will help to build even more momentum behind their work,” Mr Barilaro said.

“It’s widely recognised globally that NSW is well and truly punching above its weight in the field of quantum computing, and the State Government is keen to ensure our researchers maintain their world-leading position in what’s being dubbed the new “space race” - the race to build the world’s first quantum computer.

“It’s impossible to over-state the potential benefits of this technological innovation in terms of economic growth and job creation,” he said. Quantum computers could help us unlock the potential for earlier detection of health issues like cancer, they could better predict traffic patterns to cut back on travel time, and even help farmers with improved climate modelling.

“If quantum computing becomes a reality it will have a profound impact on all our lives and the State Government is committed to making NSW a world leader in this new and exciting technology,” Mr Barilaro said.

World-renowned quantum scientist Emeritus Professor Sir Peter Knight FRS said NSW has an unusually high concentration of quantum computing expertise.

“NSW has a stake in two of the top teams in the world working on different approaches to quantum computing,” he said NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer, Professor Mary O’Kane said the strength of quantum computing research in NSW could lead to a practical speed up of computation to tackle important data-heavy problems.

“This research could push the boundaries of physics and engineering, possibly leading to technological spin-offs that we can’t even contemplate yet,” Professor O’Kane said. "NSW has significant strengths in information and communication technology, including data analytics, photonics, and quantum computing, all of which offer potential to tackle data-heavy problems more quickly,” she said.

The new Quantum Computing Fund will support research organisations to continue to explore this incredible field. The Government will soon be making announcements about investments to support quantum computing development, commercialisation and high-level skills.

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