IT & Networks

Energy Dept. invests $625M in ‘transformative technology’

The Department of Energy Jan. 10 announced a $625 million investment for quantum research centers.

In a news release, the department said the money will be spent over five years to establish two to five multidisciplinary Quantum Information Science (QIS) Research Centers.

"QIS is on the threshold of providing transformative technology that will impact discovery science and technological innovation in the coming decades,” said Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette in a statement. “At the direction of President Trump, the department will answer the call of the National Quantum Initiative Act through our QIS Centers and ensure that America remains a world leader in this rapidly advancing field.”

These QIS centers, the news release said, are supposed to create an environment necessary to “foster and facilitate advancement of QIS, with major anticipated benefits for national security, economic competitiveness, and America’s continued leadership in science.”

A QIS center will include a collaborative research team led by staff with diverse scientific and engineering backgrounds across several institutions. Universities, nonprofit research institutions, industry, DOE national laboratories, other U.S. government laboratories, and federal agencies are considered eligible lead and partner institutions. Applications must be submitted by a single lead institution.

Funding will be doled out for awards starting this fiscal year.

Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois also announced Jan. 10 that it launched a 52-mile test bed to bolster research quantum communications research.

“America continues to lead the world in QIS and emerging technologies because of our incredible innovation ecosystem,” said federal CTO Michael Kratsios in a statement.

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