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U.S. Department of Energy Unveils Blueprint for the Quantum Internet

Argonne Director Paul Kearns speaking during a press conference on Thursday at the University of Chicago.

In a press conference on Thursday at the University of Chicago, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) unveiled a report that outlines a blueprint strategy for developing a national quantum internet. Currently, in its initial stages of development, the quantum internet could provide a secure communications network and is believed to have a significant impact in areas critical to science, industry, and national security. "Scientists now believe that the construction of a prototype will be within reach over the next decade," says the Department of Energy. Some of the unique foreseen benefits of a quantum internet:

Quantum transmissions are exceedingly difficult to eavesdrop on as information passes between locations. Scientists plan to use that trait to make virtually unhackable networks.

Quantum internet could potentially expedite the exchange of vast amounts of data. According to the report, if the components can be combined and scaled, society may be at the cusp of a breakthrough in data communication.

The creation of ultra-sensitive quantum sensors could allow engineers to better monitor and predict earthquakes or search for underground deposits of oil, gas, or minerals. Such sensors could also have applications in health care and imaging.

Crucial steps toward building such an internet are already underway in the Chicago region, one of the leading global hubs for quantum research. In February of this year, scientists from DOE's Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont, Illinois, and the University of Chicago entangled photons across a 52-mile "quantum loop" in the Chicago suburbs, successfully establishing one of the longest land-based quantum networks in the nation. That network will soon be connected to DOE's Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois, establishing a three-node, 80-mile testbed.

By CircleID Reporter – CircleID's internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us. Visit Page

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