Quantum Technology

The UK is at the forefront of a new era of quantum technologies. Ground-breaking capabilities are emerging from our excellent research and industrial base, establishing the UK as a destination of choice for global Quantum Technology companies.

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Quantum Technology Hubs

Through four Quantum Technology Hubs, the UK has established itself as a major player in the field of quantum research. The UK has flourished by producing world-leading research and forming lasting partnerships between industry, Research and Technology Organisations (RTOs), academia and government. This is supporting the rapid exploitation of quantum technologies on the road from academia to business and towards industrial maturity.

Commitment by the UK Government with a new Quantum Strategy, backed by £2.5 billion in the next 10 years¹, to pave the way for new investment, fast-growing businesses and high-quality jobs to the UK.

To find out more about technology in the UK, visit the technology sector page on the Department for International Trade's Investment Atlas.

Watch this video to find out how the UK's quantum technology hubs are helping to solve some of the world's biggest problems.

How the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme is helping UK quantum firms to scale and thrive

Quantum technologies will create new markets and upend existing ones across many sectors. The Industrial Stratetgy Challenge Fund (ISCF) for quantum technologies has stimulated commercial development, delivering the value, mentoring and opportunity that underpins the NQTP.

Businesses supported by ISCF with £153 million have raised £425 million in private sector financing since its programme started, twice the forecast estimate. That private sector support is expected to reach £715 million by 2025.

The Challenge has been successful in encouraging overseas companies, such as California-based Rigetti, to invest and collaborate in the UK. This is helping to build the supply chain infrastructure and expertise that will be crucial to sustain the UK as an independent, quantum power.

The Challenge fund helps fledgling ventures to collaborate with industry and academic partners; and to overcome the commercial and technical challenges they face. It forms a crucial part of the NQTP, one that helps all the most successful UK quantum ventures to find their commercial feet as they tread a path from research to market.

The NQTP is a crucial landing platform for spin-outs emerging from academia. It also serves as an entry point for interested end-users to explore commercial opportunities and develop prototype devices and products.

Watch this interview with Professor Sir Peter Knight who discusses how the NQTP helps set UK quantum apart.

Why invest in UK quantum technology

The UK is leading a global race to develop this new quantum era, forging its research strength into market opportunities through a co-ordinated and coherent National Quantum Technologies Programme (NQTP).

This represents a vibrant, visionary £1 billion partnership between government, academia and industry, one that is fast-tracking quantum knowledge from laboratory to wider society and economic impact.

The UK is now a magnet for inward investment and inter-governmental quantum co-operation agreements thanks to what the NQTP represents: national commitment, strong links to industry, a dynamic and world-class research base, and support from state agencies focused on science and engineering.

The NQTP expresses a dynamic global Britain built on technological innovation. The UK is now the third largest quantum developing country in the world, after the USA and China, attracting more start-ups and capital investment than any other European state.

Its joined-up approach is delivering practical, commercial quantum advantage in medical care, environmental protection, communications, defence and security capabilities. Our lead is bringing investment from technological giants as diverse as Honeywell and Amazon, and from already advanced quantum innovators, such as California-based Rigetti Computing.

The NQTP embodies a strong, collaborative ecosystem of support built across the regions and nations of the UK, of robust supply chains developing, high skills training supported, national defence enhanced, security and resilience issues addressed. It supports a culture of jobs and investment stretching across Wales, all of England and to the central belt in Scotland.

The NQTP currently supports 49 quantum start-ups and involves 120 industrial partners. And it is not just new businesses with extraordinary and life-changing potential being established, existing ones are being inspired.

Long-established corporations with global reach, such as Hitachi, Toshiba Research Europe, Teledyne e2v, BT, BP and BAE Systems, are key partners within the NQTP, developing quantum projects across the country with their resources and market expertise.

Watch this interview with Dr. Mike Short who discusses how the UK is becoming a world leader in quantum technologies.

"With 4 of the top 10 universities in the world and a rich talent pool, the UK is the best place for companies looking to develop the technologies of the future. We were delighted by Fujitsu’s commitment to further investment by announcing their Centre for Cognitive and Advanced Technologies focusing on emerging tech including quantum computing. They are one of many companies working with my team to realise their innovation strategies by harnessing the UK’s thriving research ecosystem."

Tim Kay , Director for Science and Technology, Department for Business and Trade
  1. GOV.UK. (n.d) Government commits up to 35 billion to the future of tech and science. [online] Available at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-commits-up-to-35-billion-to-future-of-tech-and-scienceopens www.gov.uk in a new tab

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