Researchers from the University of Glasgow are lending their expertise to a UK-Canada partnership which aims to create an advanced manufacturing toolkit for quantum sensing and quantum computing.
Professor Martin Weides, Head of the Quantum Circuit Group at the University of Glasgow, is leading the University’s contribution to the UK Canada Quantum Technology Programme. Joining with the University of Glasgow are Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology in the UK and the Université de Sherbrooke in Canada.
Funded by Innovate UK-Natural Sciences (UKRI) and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), the consortium will address the need to produce robust, reliable, and scalable quantum circuits to enable their future commercial exploitation and large-scale deployment.
The University of Glasgow has been involved in pioneering nanofabrication research since 1978. The James Watt Nanofabrication Centre, opened in 2005, has provided support to hundreds of companies around the world through the University’s commercial arm, Kelvin Nanotechnology. OIPT cluster tool at the JWNC/University of Glasgow combining atomic-layer deposition (ALD) for very thin films of superconducting nitrides with plasma etching and deposition tools and surface-sensitive chemical analysis and high-resolution imaging. Credit: Tania Hemakumara
The Centre’s cleanroom delivers nanofabricated component and sub-systems to all four UK Quantum Technology hubs. Over the last three years, the Centre has been a partner in 23 Innovate UK projects with UK industry.
Professor Weides’ research group explores new forms of superconducting quantum electronic circuits for quantum computing and simulation. His group works closely with Kelvin Nanotechnology, UK academics and startups to develop advanced wafer-scale qubit fabrication capabilities for 3d integrated quantum devices.
The group also has strong links to Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology for work on material and process developments for high coherent quantum circuits, such as atomic layer deposited metal nitrides offering the advantage of highly stoichiometric and 3d-conformal films to improve qubit lifetimes.
Professor Weides said: “This grant is vital to addressing today’s new pressing challenges to increase the technological readiness level of superconducting quantum circuits. Our long-standing collaboration with Oxford Instruments will be continued and strengthened by including novel materials and nanofabrication techniques in the UK’s leading nanofabrication cleanroom, the James Watt Nanofabrication Centre.
“The University of Glasgow’s subsidiary and commercialisation partner Kelvin Nanotechnology will offer access to our nanofabrication portfolio including industrial-grade superconducting processes. We are delighted to advance existing manufacturing toolkits to solve issues faced by the quantum technology start-ups, provider and research institutes in the UK and Canada.”
Dr Ravi Sundaram, Head of Strategic R&D Markets, Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology, commented “Oxford Instruments is delighted to be part of this unique trans-Atlantic consortium. Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology is ideally positioned to help develop the technology and scale it up to the next level with a clear roadmap to plasma processing solutions on 200mm wafers”.
Professor Michel Pioro-Ladrière, Professor at the Department of Physics and deputy director of the Institut quantique, Université de Sherbrooke states “The project offers excellent training prospects. Developing a highly skilled workforce is one of the main challenges in our field. The consortium will help train the scientists and engineers of tomorrow who will accelerate the development of quantum technologies.”