The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has called for proposals for “Quantum Standardization and Testing Labs”.

More on the news

  • The proposal for “Quantum Standardization and Testing Labs,” from Indian academic institutions or R&D institutions was invited by The Department of Telecommunications under The Telecom Technology Development Fund (TTDF) scheme.
  • The TTDF scheme, announced by the Department of Telecommunications in 2022, aims to support and encourage research and development in telecom products and technologies. 
  • This initiative is part of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat mission and aligns with the Prime Minister’s call for ‘Jai Anushandhan’ to support research and development in telecom products and technologies that directly improve the lives of Indian citizens.

What are Quantum Technologies?

  • These technologies are based on the principles of Quantum mechanics developed in the early 20th century to describe nature at the scale of atoms and elementary particles.
  • These technologies exploit quantum phenomena such as superposition, entanglement, and quantum tunneling to achieve advancements beyond classical systems.
  • Four domains of quantum technologies are:
  1. Quantum communication
  2. Quantum simulation
  3. Quantum computation
  4. Quantum sensing and metrology

What is Quantum Standardization?

  • Quantum Standardization establishes benchmarks and protocols essential for the seamless integration of quantum communication elements . It also enables the integration of quantum devices into wider complex systems.
  • The key quantum communication elements include quantum key distribution, quantum state analysers, optical fibres etc.

Importance of Testing Facilities

  • These facilities will cater to Indian industry members, including startups, R&D, and academic institutions to achieve compliance with national and international standards.
  • It will help to validate quantum concepts, processes, devices, and applications such as the SPDC (spontaneous parametric down conversion) process using ppKTP (Periodically poled potassium titanyl phosphate) crystals, Beryllium crystals, quantum tunneling, and quantum teleportation. 
  • These labs will serve as innovation hubs, uniting quantum technology developers, testing equipment manufacturers, and academic researchers.

Proposed technologies for Testing:

  • Single Photon and Entangled Photon Sources.
  • Single Photon Detectors, including superconducting nanowire SPDs and avalanche photodiodes.
  • Quantum Memories and Repeaters.
  • Quantum Communication Modules such as Quantum key distribution (QKD), quantum teleportation, and free-space quantum communications.
  • Trusted Nodes and Untrusted Nodes.
  • Any other items relevant to the Quantum Communication Domain.

Significance of the proposal

  • The main objective is to accelerate research and development in quantum technologies, ensuring the interoperability, reliability, and security of quantum communication systems. 
  • This initiative is a step towards making India self-reliant in quantum technologies and setting global benchmarks in this cutting-edge technology field.

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