UCL Quantum Science and Technology Institute


UCL co-lead on £3m EPSRC quantum computing programme

22 March 2022

RoarQ will research how to deliver robust and reliable quantum computing

Illustration of silicon computer chips

Researchers from UCL, University of Oxford, University of Bristol, and Imperial College London have been awarded £3m from the UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council to establish a vibrant and cross-disciplinary community of researchers in quantum computing and computer science.

The research programme, Robust and Reliable Quantum Computing (RoaRQ), will exploit the existing expertise and knowledge in classical computer science across these institutions to address the global challenge of delivering quantum computing that is robust, reliable, and trustworthy.

Achieving reliable quantum computation faces many unique challenges, but this new research network and programme will utilise over six decades of classical computing systems research. The team will extend to quantum computation the existing classical computer science research that has already worked out the tools, architectures, and languages that come together to make reliable digital systems.

Over the first year, the programme directors will invite engagement from across the UK’s scientific community to co-create a portfolio of funded, cross-disciplinary projects that will define the beginnings of a general framework and advance specific solutions for robust and reliable quantum computation. Projects selected for funding will commence from April 2023.

In addition, the programme will hold a series of scoping workshops to propose and discuss technical directions, and to facilitate the formation of project investigator teams.

Dan Browne, Professor of Physics, University College London: “I’m excited to be taking part in such an innovative research programme. Quantum computing can learn a huge amount from the know-how in the established computer science community. I am looking forward to sharing ideas with this community and building new collaborations.”

Tom Melham, Professor of Computer Science, University of Oxford: “This innovative programme, funded by the EPSRC, will create an entirely new scientific community in the UK aimed at making trustworthy quantum computing a reality. Our ambition is to seed innovation in the design of reliable quantum computing systems as far reaching as the revolution in VLSI chip design of the late 1970s and 1980s.”

Simon Benjamin, Professor of Quantum Technologies, University of Oxford: “It’s an incredibly exciting time for quantum computing, when we need people to come together from diverse backgrounds so that these machines achieve their potential as enabling tools for everyone—not just people with doctorates in quantum physics! This project is an important step in making that happen.”

Paul Kelly, Professor of Software Technology, Imperial College London: “This is an unusual and exciting opportunity to reach out to, establish, expand and seed the network of UK computer systems and software researchers to exploit the capabilities of quantum computing—and to bridge the gap to deliver quantum-accelerated applications to realise new computational capability across diverse application domains.”