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U.S. Army Research Laboratory Center for Distributed Quantum Information


Friday, March 31, 2017


Innovative proposals are sought to develop the essential elements necessary for implementing and exploiting a resilient, scalable multi-node network of distributed quantum entanglement in which each quantum node may use a different physical implementation. Recognizing that distributing, maintaining, and utilizing quantum entanglement is foundational to any quantum network, proposals must establish how QE is created, efficiently converted to and from photons whose wavelength is appropriate for transmission through free space or optical fiber, distributed among three or more quantum nodes, protected through error correction, locally stored and recovered on demand with high fidelity using quantum memory, and utilized to perform quantum operations that enable capabilities beyond what is possible classically. Proposals must investigate the physical layer and the associated protocols and algorithms necessary to demonstrate a working scalable quantum network composed of three or more quantum nodes, recognizing that the quantum nodes need not be the same physical system (e.g., trapped ions, neutral atoms, nitrogen-vacancies in diamond, superconductors, semiconductor spins) but that all quantum nodes must include integrated, modular components to generate, process, and locally store quantum information and be resiliently connected by fiber-based or free-space photonic links. Proposals must include a base configuration of three quantum nodes. Additional nodes may be included. Proposals must address all of the following aspects of a distributed quantum network using quantum nodes constructed from scalable integrated photonic and quantum components: (1) the physical architecture, (2) heterogeneous system interfaces, and (3) physical-layer network algorithms and protocols. Proposals must include efficient entanglement management protocols with experimental validation in the context of a multi-site (three or more quantum nodes) distributed quantum network. QE management takes into account entanglement routing, characterizing and manipulating multi-site entanglement, and entanglement verification. In addition, proposals should discuss and explore applications for which the quantum network can perform Army-relevant operations in a manner impossible or impractical for commensurate classical systems. Synergistic, multidisciplinary collaborative teams composed of experimental, theoretical, and computational researchers are strongly encouraged. Guided by theory, each team should focus collectively on demonstrating a network of distributed quantum entanglement and may choose the particular experimental systems in which this demonstration is performed. Preference will be given to those collaborative approaches that are, or will lead to, modular, integrated, scalable, and ultimately deployable solutions. Each team must develop methods and metrics that are then experimentally demonstrated.
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