Quantum Computing

A Kick-Start For Madrid Quantum

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Insider Summary

  • The Polytechnic University of Madrid will participate in Madrid Quantum, a Madrid-based quantum communication project.
  • The project will build Madrid Quantum Communications Infrastructure (MadQCI), a quantum cyber security network that will connect the Madrid metropolitan area and connect with Europe’s future quantum communications network (EuroQCI).
  • Critical Quote: “Madrid Quantum is a project that clearly demonstrates the Community of Madrid’s commitment to technology and innovation in such a leading field as quantum communications.” — Bárbara Fernández-Revuelta, deputy director of Madrid Community Research
  • Image: UPM

PRESS RELEASE — The Polytechnic University of Madrid is participating in Madrid Quantum, the most ambitious quantum communication project in Madrid. This project will build Madrid Quantum Communications Infrastructure (MadQCI), a quantum cybersecurity network that will connect the Madrid metropolitan area and will be linked to Europe’s future quantum communications network (EuroQCI).

The aim of the Madrid Quantum-CM (MadQ-CM) project, which recently started its journey, is to promote a scientific and industrial ecosystem around quantum communication. This project belongs to the quantum communications program of the complementary plan, in which CSIC, and the autonomous communities of Galicia, Basque Country, Castilla y León, Cataluña and Valencia also participate, and which is the largest program in quantum technology in Spain. MadQ-CM is funded thanks to the Spanish Recovery and Resilience Plan, NextGeneration EU, and the Community of Madrid. The project will tackle a wide range of activities, contributing to the advancement of quantum safe and secure networks, distribution of photonic quantum states, development of ultra-precise time signal measurement and distribution systems, development of new quantum algorithms and inter-quantum computer communication, among others. The MadQCI – Madrid Quantum Communications Infrastructure network will result from the implementation of this project.

Building on previous activities in Madrid, where last year Telefónica, RedImadrid and the Polytechnic University of Madrid launched the largest quantum network based on Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) in Europe, MadQCI will connect the Community of Madrid’s main research centers in this technology , and it will also connect them to government entities with high security needs. Generate a real, usable and functional quantum cybersecurity network. “MadQCI goes beyond what it has done to date. It will not only be a larger experimental network, but a qualitatively different network: connecting key security hubs and bringing this technology closer to its use in real applications,” said Vicente Martín, UPM professor and coordinator of this project.

A pioneer and a unique network in Spain, immune to any attacks

MadQCI, with a radius of approximately 30km, is based on a fiber optic connection and will connect the Madrid metropolitan area. This is a staggering dimension considering the nature of this technology. The network will also link to satellite stations, a key point for achieving long-distance connections with the rest of Europe.

This network will then be useful not only for experiments, but also for the demonstration of new service technologies based on quantum technologies. Serving other mid-term and long-term goals in the long term, such as paving the way to the quantum Internet through distribution of photonic quantum states, development of highly precise timing signal measurement and distribution systems, development of new quantum algorithms, communication between quantum computers or manufacturing of individual quanta-emitting devices . The Quantum Key Distribution System will also be implemented via fiber optics in conventional networks, integrated into commercial telecommunications infrastructure. Development will also be carried out for long-distance quantum communications using satellites. MadQCI will be part of the future EuroQCI, a continental-wide quantum communications network that will link all of Europe.

“Quantum networks implement cryptographic functions that are demonstrated securely, regardless of the abilities of the attacker,” explains Vicente Martín.

“It doesn’t matter the computational power the attacker has; Even if I have a quantum computer, I can’t tamper with the transmission of the quantum key,” he continued. Therefore, a network enhanced with quantum security is immune to any computational attack. In addition, this enables other services, such as ultra-precise time signals and other applications of quantum sensing and, in the future, communication between quantum computers.

Dedicated to research and offering real world services

The Madrid Quantum-CM (MadQ-CM) project will carry out a two-year training plan for scientists and engineers, which will help consolidate advances and advances in the field of quantum technology, with particular emphasis on developing entrepreneurship. This, together with the creation of a business ecosystem that will launch proposed developments and assist in the dissemination and exploitation of the results, will streamline the translation of scientific knowledge for the benefit of society.

“This will be a permanent network dedicated to research and practical demonstration of quantum communication technology, connecting not only “technology producers” but also “users”, and doing so using a communication network, not just connections between research laboratories”, said the UPM professor the. Networks are also integrated in the communications infrastructure, which is essential to be able to provide real services.

“Madrid Quantum is a project that clearly demonstrates the Community of Madrid’s commitment to technology and innovation in such a leading area as quantum communication” says Bárbara Fernández-Revuelta, deputy director of Madrid Community Research and community representative on the project.

The MadQ-CM project is coordinated by Vicente Martín, professor at the Polytechnic University of Madrid (UPM), and relies on the participation of the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), Complutense University of Madrid (UCM), IMDEA Software Foundation (IMDEA SW), IMDEA Network Foundation ( IMDEA NW), the National Institute of Aerospace Technology (INTA), the Spanish Metrology Center (CEM), and the Vithas Foundation (FV).

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