Sheffield spin out AegiQ receives £1.4m funding to explore Quantum Photonics

The CEO of AegiQ, Dr. Max Sich

A quantum photonics start-up based in the UK, AegiG has secured 1.4 million pounds from Innovate UK, a government agency that funds and supports business innovation and is a part of UK Research and Innovation. It will start exploring secure quantum communications for both fibre-optic- and satellite-based platforms. Joining a worldwide-spanning pilot project, AegiQ will be providing scalable and high-performance semiconductor technology for advanced next-generation telecoms.

Having received funding from Innovate UK, AegiQ is a member of a new team of companies. It will build new quantum hacking method-resistant communication infrastructures. The up-and-coming company is also passionately advocating the use and exploration of quantum photonic technology.

AegiQ is a company co-founded by chief executive officer Dr. Maksym (Max) Sich, chief technology officer Scott Dufferwiel, and two other members, Jon Heffernan and Maurice Skolnick, and is a spin-out from the University of Sheffield and part of the UK government’s 70 billion pound initiative for researching quantum technology.

With its sights set on developing III-V-based quantum photonics, AegiQ intends to show that it is a far more reliable and safe method that also employs current industrial processing techniques. The company is also part of 2020’s Creative Destruction Lab’s Quantum Stream cohort, was listed as one of the members of Quantum Computing Hardware Companies Building the Future.

Dufferwiel says that “existing software-based encryption of telecom networks is vulnerable to quantum attack,” and “the risks are losing control with our communications and being faced with massively compromised security from quantum hackers.” Continuing, he states that encryption models commonly used today in standard computers will no longer be able to handle these attacks. Many different industries will be needing their new quantum solutions in the near future to prevent being compromised.

The telecoms industry is increasingly seeing quantum cryptography as the key to future-proofing security. One of the signs is the increased attention to advancement in quantum computing and hacking which makes traditional encryption methods vulnerable. The UK National Quantum Technologies Programme believes that quantum technology will “lead to major advances in […] the finance, defence, aerospace, energy, infrastructure (sic) and telecommunications sectors.”

AegiQ is making efforts in trying to raise its seed round of investment now. The funding from Innovate UK will also help the company boost R&D and technology production, giving it the foundation needed to develop further in areas like quantum sensing, information processing, and most importantly, quantum communications.

About AegiQ:

Based in the UK, AegiQ is a company that is working on securely encrypted quantum broadband communications, quantum-based imagery, and scalable quantum computing. Their high-performance quantum photonic systems have on-demand single photons and are very versatile. As of September 2020, they have received government funding.

Find out more from their website: AegiQ