Monthly Archives: November 2015
The UK National Quantum Technologies Programme celebrated its first anniversary with the inaugural Quantum Technology Showcase which was held at The Royal Society in London on 11 November. Led by QuantIC and the other national hubs, the purpose of the event was to introduce the work of the Quantum Technology Hub Network to industry and government.
The format of the QT Showcase was structured to allow for short half hour presentations and lively Q&As with breaks in between for attendees to network and view the live demonstrator exhibits from the hubs. The presentations featured a diversity of speakers, from funders (EPSRC and Innovate UK) to hub directors and industry partners, which provided a good overview of the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme from inception to its current direction of travel.
There certainly is a buzz about Quantum Technology; the QT Showcase was a resounding success with the event being oversubscribed and exceeding the maximum capacity of the venue. More than 67% of attendees were from industry and government and a post event survey indicated that over 93% of respondents felt that attending the event had improved their understanding of the programme and the work of the hubs. The following comment from a survey respondent summarises the positive feedback that had been received, “The structure of the timings, with short sharp talks, then time to explore the exhibits, interlaced, worked very well. There was also a good broad invitee list, with many new faces.”
There were even enquiries made to The Royal Society from the general public wanting to attend the event after QuantIC’s Professor Miles Padgett was featured on the TODAY Programme on BBC Radio 4 on the day. He said, “It’s good to know there is so much interest in quantum technology, not just from industry and government but from the public as well. We’ve spoken to many new companies today who are interested in possible collaborations and it was also good to see what the other hubs were working on as well. I’m looking forward to the next one already!”
In October, Minister for Universities and Science Jo Johnson paid a visit to the University of Glasgow and expressed an interest in learning more about QuantIC activities.
Gathering several demonstrators into the Vice Chancellor’s Office so that the minister could experience first-hand the various technologies, the “pop-up QuantIC lab” featured the research being done with the Single Pixel Camera, Wee-g and Light in Flight. Dr Graeme Malcolm, Chief Executive of M Squared Lasers was also on hand to speak with the minister about industrial collaboration as the company had recently been awarded a QuantIC partnership resource grant to explore the technical feasibility of gas detection with the Single Pixel Camera.
Professor Miles Padgett said, “The Minister really engaged with our demonstrators and spent a fair amount of time asking technical questions which was a nice surprise. And if a re-tweet by Jo Johnson on his visit is anything to by, I hope he was impressed that QuantIC and the other quantum technology hubs are very much focussed on translating technology with industry into new market opportunities for the UK.”