Endowed Professorship Is To Conduct Research in the Field of Quantum Computing

30/11/2021

With the assistance of the BMW Group, RWTH is establishing the academic chair of “Quantum Information Systems”

 

Quantum computing is one of the most promising future-oriented technologies and it has the potential to massively increase the computing power of computers through quantum mechanical effects. This being so, it is able to push the boundaries of what has thus far been possible and to revolutionize the areas in which this technology is applied, from materials science right up to automated driving. For example, one of the areas in which RWTH Aachen University is already engaged in this area of research is in the “Matter and Light for Quantum Computing (ML4Q)” cluster of excellence. Funded by the BMW Group, the endowed chair called “Quantum Information Systems” will further promote the research that is taking place on this highly relevant and future-oriented technology at RWTH.

Today, Professor Ulrich Rüdiger, Rector of RWTH, Alexander Buresch, CIO of BMW AG and Dr. Stefan Floeck, Executive Mentor of the strategic partnership between the BMW Group and RWTH and Head of the MINI – BMW compact car – product line, signed the contract for the founding of the endowed chair of “Quantum Information Systems.”

Over a period of six years, the BMW Group will make 4.5 million euros available for the endowed chair, equipment, and staff at RWTH. A further 1.0 million euros will be paid into a networking trust that will promote interdisciplinary research projects at  RWTH and the integration of the academic chair into both the higher education sector and into Forschungszentrum Jülich. The joint overarching goal of  RWTH and the BMW Group is to build a bridge between excellent fundamental research in Germany and the usability of Quantum Computing. The new academic chair will be integrated into the Department of Computer Science and it will form part of the Information and Computer Technologies (ICT) Profile Area. This will further strengthen the research spectrum in the areas of modern information technology and artificial intelligence.

Innovation Potential for Advances in Society

RWTH Rector Professor Ulrich Rüdiger explained: “Quantum technology is one of the topics most relevant for the future, as it has enormous potential for our advancement as a society. This endowed professorship will enable us to intensify our research in this area. As a university, RWTH wishes to engage in networking and we are convinced that we can achieve the best results for future challenges if we make use of a continuous exchange of knowledge and technology with our partners from the fields of science, industry, and society.”

RWTH has been a strategic partner of the BMW Group since 2017. Dr. Stefan Floeck, Executive Mentor of the strategic partnership between the BMW Group and RWTH remarked: “With its excellently networked ecosystem and its focus on technology, RWTH Aachen University is the perfect home for the endowed chair, which promises to bear significant insights into the industrialization of quantum computing solutions.”

RWTH is the second university at which the BMW Group is funding an endowed chair for research into quantum computing. Another one is being established at the Technical University of Munich. There, the focus of the academic chair of “Quantum Algorithms and Uses” will be on the development of algorithms, whilst the academic chair at  RWTH will focus on researching software integration and industrialization skills. These are designed to enable usage of quantum computing even outside the field of science in the medium term. In its role as a cross-university research and technology transfer unit, RWTH Innovation supports the strategic cooperation between the BMW Group and RWTH.