Cluster of Excellence: Pushing the Boundaries of Quantum Science


Congratulations to the research group Quantum Optics, Quantum Nanophysics and Quantum Information and all scientists of the newly approved Cluster of Excellence "Quantum Science Austria"!

The Second Quantum Revolution - the breathtaking development of modern quantum science - would not have been possible without the pioneering contributions from Austria. They form the basis from which quantum technologies are being developed today that surpass classical technologies in many areas.

The scientists of one of the new beacons of cutting-edge research in Austria, the FWF Cluster of Excellence "Quantum Science Austria / quantA", will now pursue innovative, fundamental questions about the quantum nature of space, time and gravity, new paradigms in quantum information science and the physics of quantum many-body systems with the help of a funding volume of 21 million euros from the FWF and additional investments by the participating research institutions.

On the Board of Scientific Directors Markus Aspelmeyer serves as Deputy Director of Research. Other colleagues from the Quantum Optics, Quantum Nanophysics and Quantum Information research group at the Faculty of Physics will contribute to the success of the five-year project as key researchers with their broad experimental and theoretical expertise: Markus Arndt, Philip Walther, Časlav Brukner and Norbert Schuch. Together with scientists from the University of Innsbruck (Director of Research: Gregor Weihs), the Vienna University of Technology, the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IQOQI Vienna and Innsbruck), the University of Linz and IST Austria, the most difficult puzzles of the quantum world will be tackled with new theoretical approaches and well-controlled model systems based on trapped ions, ultracold atoms, systems with long-range interactions, superconducting quantum circuits and nanoscopic solid-state systems.

The vision of the Cluster of Excellence "Quantum Science Austria / quantA" is to develop into the only quantum research centre in Austria, giving the participating research institutions a competitive advantage in the international market for talent, ideas and intellectual property through cooperation between all quantum researchers working in Austria in the field of fundamental quantum physics. Such an effect will be achieved through strong collaboration with the many coordinating and supporting efforts of the Vienna Center for Quantum Science and Technology (VCQ), the Erwin Schrödinger Center for Quantum Sciences (ESQ), the Austrian part of the European Quantum Community Network (QCN), the Austrian Physical Society (OePG), the Federation of Austrian Industries (iv), the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber (WKO), the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG), Photonics Austria, and others.

Borivoje Dakic (University of Vienna), spokesperson of the Vienna Center for Quantum Science and Technology (VCQ), one of the largest quantum centres in Europe, is delighted with the approval of quantA, one of five Clusters of Excellence approved for the first time: "We are looking forward to supporting the goals of quantA and contributing to the promotion of excellence in science, education, outreach and technology transfer."

About the Clusters of Excellence

Through the FWF's new funding initiative excellent=austria, top-class scientists at Austrian research institutions take on a central role in shaping and strengthening scientific priorities - following a highly competitive selection process - in order to achieve outstanding cooperative research achievements at the top international level.

The Clusters of Excellence create optimal conditions in terms of international competitiveness for future generations of researchers. Furthermore, synergies between world-class research, (inter)national networking and knowledge transfer are to be created in order to achieve the programme's goal.

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Research Group Quantum Optics, Quantum Nanophysics and Quantum Information
Vienna Center for Quantum Science and Technology (VCQ)

Board of scientific directors (from left to right): Armando Rastelli (University of Linz), Hannes-Jörg Schmiedmayer (TU Wien), Francesca Ferlaino (ÖAW), Gregor Weihs (University of Innsbruck), Oriol Romero-Isart (University of Innsbruck), Markus Aspelmeyer (University of Vienna); not pictured: Johannes Fink (IST Austria). Image credit: Daniel Novotny/FWF