Tutorial A (13:00-17:00, 16 Aug)

Quantum Information Science and Enabling Technology


Presented By:
Laurence D. Merkle, Air Force Institute of Technology,

Michael V. Pak, Air Force Institute of Technology,

Anil K. Patnaik, Air Force Institute of Technology,

David E. Weeks, Air Force Institute of Technology,

Charles Cerny, Air Force Research Laboratory, IEEE Dayton Section,

Robert Ewing, Air Force Research Laboratory, IEEE Dayton Section,



Quantum information science (QIS) has the long-term potential to revolutionize computing, networking, sensing, and timing. From an assumed familiarity with linear algebra, this tutorial will begin with the surprisingly few aspects of quantum mechanics necessary to discuss the concepts of qubits (“quantum bits”), quantum gates, and quantum circuits. Simple quantum algorithms will be developed and demonstrated on cloud-accessible IBM quantum computing hardware. Additional discussion will include:

  • Requirements for physical qubit implementations and tradeoffs among leading technologies,
  • Photon-based qubits, quantum entanglement, communication and quantum key distribution (QKD),
  • Computational and complexity theory as they pertain to quantum computing,
  • Novel sensing and timing devices for both terrestrial and space applications,
  • Non-traditional physics-based methods addressing RF signal measurement limitations, and
  • Extend beyond the foundations of Quantum Science and explore the demonstration and practical utility of Quantum Enabling Technology.



  1. Quantum Information Processing and Computing: Foundational concepts of quantum mechanics will be introduced and applied to the development of qubits and their application to quantum computing. Simple algorithms will be developed and examples using the IBM quantum computers will be explored.
  2. Qubit implementation: Basic requirements for physical implementation of qubits, a review of advantages and limitations of commonly used natural and engineered physical qubits (superconducting qubits, trapped ions, etc.), a discussion of various problems arising in physical implementation of entangling quantum gates.
  3. Quantum Communications and Networking: Basics of quantum communication using photons, photonic qubits, entanglement, quantum teleportation for qubit transmission, Quantum Key Distribution [QKD] and applications – free space vs fiber guided, challenges of quantum communications, nodes, repeaters and networking, quantum storage
  4. Quantum Computational Complexity: Will quantum computers be able to solve problems that classical computers cannot? Will they be able to efficiently solve problems that are classically intractable? Discussion will begin with relevant ideas from (classical) theory of computation and complexity theory and conclude with the current understanding of (and open questions with respect to) the relationship between classical and quantum complexity classes.
  5. Quantum Sensing: (i.e., novel sensing devices [Optical-mechanical, strain, qubit sensors, ultra-sensitive quantum electric, magnetic, and gravitational field sensors])
  6. Quantum Timing: (i.e., Chip-scale/Low-SWaP atomic/optical clocks and frequency combs for terrestrial or space applications)
  7. Complex RF Signal Processing: (i.e., Non-traditional Physics-based methods that address Radio Frequency (RF) signal measurement limitations (e.g., sampling jitter, thermal noise, Nyquist/Shannon theorem)



The tutorial assumes familiarity with linear algebra. Participants will gain more from the latter portions if they also have familiarity with solid state physics, electromagnetics, and quantum mechanics.  Included examples will have the greatest relevance to those with an interest in advanced defense-related technologies.  The target audience for this tutorial is research scientists and engineers.

More to come…

Tutorials are included with conference registration and will be held on Aug 16, 2021