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Q-CTRL, a startup that applies the principles of control engineering to accelerate the development of quantum technology, announced a global research and technology development partnership with Advanced Navigation, a leader in AI-based navigational hardware.
Q-CTRL and Advanced Navigation entered the partnership in early 2020 in support of their collaborative research and development in quantum-enabled sensing. The two organizations will now be conducting joint technical development in support of both the civilian and defense markets focused on quantum-enhanced precision navigation and timing (PNT).
Quantum sensing is considered one of the most promising areas in the global research effort to leverage the exotic properties of quantum physics for real-world benefit. It is expected to revolutionize PNT through an ability to detect very weak accelerations while maintaining accuracy over long times. Quantum-enabled PNT can therefore enable highly precise navigation in commercial and military applications where GPS is unavailable.
Q-CTRL is a pioneer in the field of quantum control engineering which applies the lessons of classical control engineering to stabilize quantum systems against disturbances in their environment, a critical component in bringing quantum sensing to market. The firm is a trusted provider of quantum control solutions across all applications of quantum technology, and has a growing practice in quantum sensing for aerospace and defense.
Advanced Navigation builds ultra-precise, AI-based navigational technologies and robotics for sea, air, land and space across commercial and defense domains. Their team has specialized expertise across a broad range of fields including optical and MEMS-based inertial sensors, GNSS, inertial navigation, RF technologies, acoustics, robotics, AI and algorithms.
“We are excited to enter into a partnership with Q-CTRL, who has the world’s largest and most capable specialist team of quantum control engineers,” said Chris Shaw co-CEO and co-founder of Advanced Navigation. “Combining our expertise and manufacturing capability in precision navigation technologies, along with Q-CTRL's expertise in the design and operation of advanced quantum hardware, will allow us to bring next-generation quantum PNT solutions to market.”
“The team at Q-CTRL is thrilled to have entered a commercial engagement with Advanced Navigation,” said Q-CTRL CEO and founder Prof. Michael J. Biercuk. “Our shared affinity for the role of control and machine learning in improving hardware performance make for a perfect match, and we’re exceptionally excited to deploy our team’s expertise in quantum sensing for production quantum-enhanced PNT systems.”
The Institute for Defense Analysis has highlighted precision navigation in GPS-denied environments as a key application for quantum technology, with the potential to support maritime systems, UAVs, and aircraft. With improvements in system size and performance, IDA forecasts a quantum PNT market exceeding $200 million annually by 2024.
Q-CTRL and Advanced Navigation hope to dramatically expand this opportunity through the development of ultra-high-performance software-enabled hybrid quantum PNT systems for autonomous vehicles, defense, and space applications.