Quantum Technology Capital: Quantum Photonic Integrated Circuits (QuPIC)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Bristol
Department Name: Physics

Abstract

We will establish a UK quantum device prototyping service, focusing on design, manufacture, test, packaging and rapid device prototyping of quantum photonic devices. QuPIC will provide academia and industry with an affordable route to quantum photonic device fabrication through commercial-grade fabrication foundries and access to supporting infrastructure. QuPIC will provide qualified design tools tailored to each foundry's fabrication processes, multiproject wafer access, test and measurement, and systems integration facilities, along with device prototyping capabilities. The aim is to enable greater capability amongst quantum technology orientated users by allowing adopters of quantum photonic technologies to realise advanced integrated quantum photonic devices, and to do so without requiring in-depth knowledge.

We will bring together an experienced team of engineers and scientists to provide the required breadth of expertise to support and deliver this service.

Four work packages deliver the QuPIC service. They are:
WP1 - Design tools for photonic simulation and design software, thermal and mechanical design packages and modelling
WP2 - Wafer fabrication - Establishing the qualified component library for the different fabrication processes and materials and offering users a multi-project wafer service
WP3 - Integrated device test and measurement - Automated wafer scale electrical and optical characterisation, alignment systems, cryogenic systems to support single-photon detector integration)
WP4 - Packaging and prototyping - Tools for subsystem integration into hybrid and functionalised quantum photonic systems and the rapid prototyping of novel, candidate component designs before wafer-scale manufacturing and testing

The design tools (WP1) will provide all the core functionality and component libraries to allow users to design quantum circuits, for a range of applications. We will work closely with fabrication foundries (WP2) to qualify the design libraries and to provide affordable access to high-quality devices via a multi-project wafer approach, where many users share the fabrications costs. Specialist test and measurement facilities (WP3) will provide rapid device characterization (at the wafer level), whilst packaging and prototyping tools (WP4) will allow the assembly of subsystems into highly functionalised quantum photonic systems.

Planned Impact

QuPIC will provide the world's first open access quantum photonic manufacturing facility and deliver a capability that does not yet exist worldwide. By taking the lead in such an enterprise we will ensure that the UK stays at the forefront of this emerging technology. This capital investment will not only ensure that UK academics and industries continue to lead the quantum revolution, it will accelerate UK research, accelerate the rate of impact and deployment of quantum technologies, and it will enable a step-change in our adoption of this ground breaking technology by enabling easy access to ground breaking quantum photonic devices. Through this programme the UK will be perfectly positioned to capitalise on the £270m investment into Quantum Technologies and accelerate science, through technology to market, where it will enable new high growth businesses to establish in the UK, providing jobs and wealth creation opportunities and new technologies that will help addresses some of societies most pressing problems.

Industrial uptake of quantum technologies has been relatively slow to date. By providing a fabless route to high-quality devices we anticipate increased industrial activity in photonic quantum technologies. QuPIC will stimulate new industry and businesses by massively reducing the costs to entry for this technology, with the anticipation that start-up companies will be a heavy user of this facility.

QuPIC will be founded in the Nanoscience and Quantum Information Centre at the University of Bristol. It will become an epicentre of activity that will benefit industry, the National QT Hubs and wider academic community. By providing an affordable, low-risk and rapid route to quantum device manufacture, QuPIC will accelerate innovation and delivery of quantum technologies as well as providing training workshops in all aspects of the design process. With the establishment of an expanding quantum-photonic technologies community we will build a user group comproising both industry and academic members to provide open access information, and establish a quantum photonic technology roadmap as a mechanism to inform and engage users, and provide a strategic focus on future developments.

The UK is leading the field in quantum photonics and the proposed capability would move towards securing the entire process of design, manufacture, testing, packing, assembly and advanced functionalities within the UK. In the future, this platform will ease the transition of quantum photonic components from research to market because the fabrication processes will be compatible with and transferable to commercial foundries.

Publications

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Wang J (2017) Experimental quantum Hamiltonian learning in Nature Physics

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Silverstone J (2016) Silicon Quantum Photonics in IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics

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Sibson P (2017) Chip-based quantum key distribution. in Nature communications

 
Description This is a strategic capital award and all equipment has been procured and is in use to the benefit of existing research programmes and UK investment in quantum technologies (QT) through the EPSRC QT Hubs and CDT programmes. We have also established the key metrics that will be important to the majority of future users of the QuPIC service. We have developed a capability to assemble designs for multiple sources in an efficient manner.
Exploitation Route This award will generate a manufacturing capability and facility which will be open to the UK QT community to design, manufacturer and test quantum photonic devices.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Electronics,Environment,Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology

URL http://www.bristol.ac.uk/physics/research/quantum/qet-labs/
 
Title CHIP-BASED QUANTUM KEY DISTRIBUTION 
Description There is provided an integrated-optic transmitter for transmitting light pulses to a further optical apparatus for generating a quantum cryptographic key according to at least one quantum cryptography technique. There is also provided an integrated-optic receiver for generating a quantum cryptographic key from light pulses received from a further optical apparatus. The transmitter apparatus splits incoming light into two paths to temporally separate the split light pulses and controls the output intensity of each split pulse as well as the phase of at least one of the split pulses. The receiver apparatus receives first and second light pulses and controls the output intensity of each said pulse between a first and a second optical detector. The light input into the second detector passes through an integrated element that controls the amount of light output into two paths that recombine before at least a portion is output to the second detector. 
IP Reference WO2016142701 
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed No
Impact None to date
 
Title OPTICAL SOURCE 
Description An integrated optical device and method for generating photons by manipulating path entanglement is provided. An integrated optical splitter splits pump light between two interferometer arms wherein each arm comprises a substantially identical photon pair source configured to be able to convert at least one pump light photon into a signal and idler photon pair. An integrated optical combiner device in optical communication with a first and a second optical output path interferes light from the first and second arms and outputs the signal and idler photons by bunching the signal and idler photons together in one of the optical output paths, or anti-bunching the signal photon in one output path and the corresponding idler photon in the other optical output path. 
IP Reference US9235101 
Protection Patent application published
Year Protection Granted 2016
Licensed Commercial In Confidence
Impact n/a
 
Description 16 June to 17 June McKinsey T-30 summit 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Convenes top leaders of the semiconductor industry and its related ecosystem to discuss topical issues impacting the industry
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://apps.mckinsey.com/t30/
 
Description 6 December Opening of the Winton Gallery at the Science Museum (London) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The Science Museum in London unveiled its new mathematics gallery, as part of the display a QETLabs chip will be on display next to the Enigma Machine.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/about-us/press/june-2016/new-mathematics-gallery
 
Description Bristol Quantum Information Technologies Workshop 2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact BQIT is a three day annual workshop aimed at enabling leading UK and international academics and industrial partners to come together; to explore and discuss future ambitions and challenges in the field of Quantum Information Technologies. Since conception in 2014 BQIT has had 162 speakers and panellists who have presented their work and opinions on a range of topics, from quantum theory to innovation in industry.

My talk was titled "Silicon Photonic Quantum Technologies".
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.bristol.ac.uk/physics/research/quantum/conferences/bqit-workshop/
 
Description Cheltenham Science Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The team hosted a demonstration in the Discovery Zone at the Cheltenham Science Festival, in collaboration with the NQIT Hub in Oxford.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015,2016
URL http://www.bristol.ac.uk/physics/news/2016/qet-chetsci.html
 
Description IEEE Optical MEMS and Nanophotonics Annual Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The 2016 International Conference on Optical MEMS and Nanophotonics (OMN2016) covered the most recent advances emerging from the extensive research and development in optical MEMS and nanophotonics that is continuing at academic, government and industrial laboratories worldwide. The conference will cover the latest advances in fundamental and applied research on micro-optical and nanophotonic devices and systems; the latest advances in materials and process technologies relevant to optical MEMS and nanophotonics; and the latest advances in the applications of optical MEMS and nanophotonic devices and systems.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015,2016
URL http://www.omn2016.org/
 
Description QET Labs Quantum Techology: Today and Tomorrow November 2016 (Bristol) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact The Quantum Engineering Technology Labs(QETLabs) at the University of Bristol invited delegates to a unique one free day event on Wednesday 23rd November 2016 to explore the potential impact and opportunities brought by the development of Quantum Technologies.
The day focused around the potential impact and opportunities created by Quantum Technologies in business and incorporated:

Talks from Gooch & Housego, Airbus and Keysight Technologies
Hands on Quantum Technologies demonstrations
Facilitated discussions about how Quantum Technologies fit in to a future industrial technology landscape
Opportunities to talk to experts about the applications of Quantum Technologies in your business

This event was aimed at those with an interest in bringing quantum technologies into their business, working with existing companies and academic research groups to develop underpinning and associated technologies and applications.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.bristol.ac.uk/physics/research/quantum/conferences/qid/
 
Description Quantum in the Summer 2016 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact In the summer of 2016 QET Labs held their second annual summer school, Quantum in the Summer, for students aged 16 and over. The intensive week-long summer school runs for one week and celebrates light in all its forms.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015,2016
URL http://www.bristol.ac.uk/physics/research/quantum/engagement/qsummer/