All questions answered by Director of Research Augusto Smerzi from the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Italy.
What do you want to achieve in this project?
The Qombs project aims to realise a quantum simulator platform made of ultracold atoms for engineering a new generation of quantum cascade laser frequency combs, characterised by non-classical emission and entanglement among the comb modes, to be exploited for quantum communication and detection.
How will European citizens benefit from this project, both from the technology developments it accomplishes as well as the basic science breakthroughs it may achieve?
From the fundamental science point of view, the Qombs project will demonstrate the effectiveness of atomic quantum simulators in simulating physics dynamics, characterising real devices such as quantum cascade lasers. On the applications side, the project will provide for a substantial development of such devices endowing them with quantum performance, useful for advanced (secure) communication and high-sensitivity detection of pollutants.
Why is the Quantum Flagship important and why did you choose to become part of it?
The Quantum Flagship action is the most scientifically-advanced program sponsored by the European Commission. It gives the possibility to the European Academy to perform high-level research providing generous funding and support. It opens the possibility of cooperation among the highest-level Research Institutes within Europe and creates a solid bridge, connecting Research Institutes and Companies involved in the development of scientifically-advanced products useful for the general public.
How do you see the advancement of quantum technologies in the near future and what would be your ultimate dream in the long run?
Quantum technologies will provide better solutions to the main challenges in fundamental fields like energy, health, security and environment. In the long-run, we aim to integrate quantum sensors with consumer applications, such as integrated photonic or solid-state devices for mobile devices. The real challenge is to bring quantum technologies in everyday life.