The White House Office of Technology Policy (OSTP), National Science Foundation (NSF) and Department of Energy (DOE) announces U.S. government funding of $625 Million to establish Quantum Information Science Centers which will be led by five different DOE national labs. An additional $340 million will be contributed from the private sector and academic institutions. These investments will be in additional to the $75 million in funding for three Quantum Leap Challenge Institutes announced by the National Science Foundation last month.

A total of 69 organizations including national labs (listed below), universities, and companies will participate in the effort in over 22 U.S. states, Canada, and Italy. Commercial companies participating include ColdQuanta, Goldman Sachs, Janis Cryogenic Research Equipment, IBM, Intel, Lockheed Martin and Microsoft, and Rigetti.

Additional academic and other non-profit institutions involved as partners in one or more of the five efforts include University of Colorado at Boulder, Los Alamos National Laboratory, MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Caltech, Colorado School of Mines, Duke University, Harvard University, John Hopkins University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, NASA Ames Research Center, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Northwestern University, Princeton University, Purdue University, Stanford University, Stony Brook University, Temple University, Tufts University, University of Arizona, UC Berkeley, UC Santa Barbara, University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, University of Maryland, University of New Mexico, University of Southern California, University of Tennessee, UT Austin, University of Washington, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Yale University, Canada’s Université de Sherbrooke and Italy’s Universita Degli Studi Di Padova & National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN).

Here is a description of each of the Quantum Information Science Centers and their missions:

Q-NEXT · Next Generation Quantum Science and Engineering
Lead Institution:  Argonne National Laboratory

Q-NEXT will create a focused, connected ecosystem to deliver quantum interconnects, to establish national foundries, and to demonstrate communication links, networks of sensors, and simulation testbeds. In addition to enabling scientific innovation, Q-NEXT will build a quantum-smart workforce, create quantum standards by building a National Quantum Devices Database, and provide pathways to the practical commercialization of quantum technology by embedding industry in all aspects of its operations and incentivizing start-ups.


C2QA · Co-design Center for Quantum Advantage
Lead Institution: Brookhaven National Laboratory

C2QA aims to overcome the limitations of today’s noisy intermediate scale quantum (NISQ) computer systems to achieve quantum advantage for scientific computations in high-energy, nuclear, chemical and condensed matter physics. The integrated five-year goal of C2QA is to deliver a factor of 10 improvement in each of software optimization, underlying materials and device properties, and quantum error correction, and to ensure these improvements combine to provide a factor of 1,000 improvement in appropriate computation metrics.


SQMS · Superconducting Quantum Materials and Systems Center
Lead Institution: Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory

The primary mission of SQMS is to achieve transformational advances in the major crosscutting challenge of understanding and eliminating the decoherence mechanisms in superconducting 2D and 3D devices, with the goal of enabling construction and deployment of superior quantum systems for computing and sensing. In addition to the scientific advances, SQMS will target tangible deliverables in the form of unique foundry capabilities and quantum testbeds for materials, physics, algorithms, and simulations that could broadly serve the national QIS ecosystem.


QSA · Quantum Systems Accelerator
Lead Institution: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

QSA aims to co-design the algorithms, quantum devices, and engineering solutions needed to deliver certified quantum advantage in scientific applications. QSA’s multi-disciplinary team will pair advanced quantum prototypes—based on neutral atoms, trapped ions, and superconducting circuits—with algorithms specifically constructed for imperfect hardware to demonstrate optimal applications for each platform in scientific computing, materials science, and fundamental physics. The QSA will deliver a series of prototypes to broadly explore the quantum technology trade-space, laying the basic science foundation to accelerate the maturation of commercial technologies.


QSC · The Quantum Science Center
Lead Institution: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

QSC is dedicated to overcoming key roadblocks in quantum state resilience, controllability, and ultimately scalability of quantum technologies. This goal will be achieved through integration of the discovery, design, and demonstration of revolutionary topological quantum materials, algorithms, and sensors, catalyzing development of disruptive technologies. In addition to the scientific goals, integral to the activities of the QSC are development of the next generation of QIS workforce by creating a rich environment for professional development and close coordination with industry to transition new QIS applications to the private sector.


For additional information you can read several different news releases issued by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science Technology Policy,  Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Fermi National Laboratory, Yale University, Harvard University, MIT, Purdue, Stanford, Northwestern University, Columbia University, UC Santa Barbara, University of Arizona, City College of New York, Intel, IBM, Microsoft, and Rigetti.

August 26, 2020