Momentum for cutting edge quantum networks is building. In New York City, quantum technology developer Qunnect has built a quantum network testbed and recently announced an expansion to that network.

In contrast with traditional fiber optic communications which use light pulses to transmit information in the form of ones and zeros, a quantum network uses entangled light particles which have the potential to carry more complex data. It’s complex technology that offers potential security as well capacity advantages.

The Qunnect network, known as GothamIQ, is being expanded to connect the Brooklyn Navy Yards to New York University. Qunnect is partnering with the Center for Quantum Information Physics (CQIP) at the university on the project.

The network eventually is expected to be available to the financial services, critical infrastructure and telecom industries.

The news comes several weeks after Tennessee utility company EPB announced that it was building a quantum network in Chattanooga. EPB is the same company that made headlines a decade ago when it built a gigabit network in Chattanooga.

Qunnect Quantum Network

In a press release, Qunnect said that connecting its testbed to NYU will enable the company to showcase “protocols and technologies that will eventually be used by a wide cross-section of customers and partners within the Manhattan borough and across New York City.”

Qunnect Chief Science Officer Dr. Mehdi Namazi said the company’s quantum network is “a first critical step towards Qunnect providing ‘entanglement as a service’– quantum protocols that will allow our customers to have access to verified, fully secure entangled particles between their internal nodes with the option to freely expand their entanglement nodes with other partners in the city.”

In the coming months, he said, “we’ll be pleased to provide data insights from this milestone, specifically tied to polarization stabilization.”

Qunnect says that its first generation metropolitan product suite will be completed during the middle of the year and will provide scalability and the capability of being deployed in crowded urban environments. The technology also will be operational at room temperatures, unlike the “fragile, climate-controlled laboratory settings” that labs use.

Namazi said that the testbed will showcase protocols and technologies that eventually will be available.  CQIP and Qunnect, along with SandboxAQ, will develop a quantum information science (QIS) curriculum and dedicated lab that they hope will help create a quantum workforce in New York City.

In 2021, Qunnect said it “commercialized” quantum memory. That memory is at the heart of Qunnect’s Quantum Repeater product suite, which provides long distance distribution of entanglement across existing telecommunications infrastructure.

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