Quantum for Environment Design Challenge
The UW student and post-doctoral community is challenged to present ideas and designs for how Quantum Technologies can significantly impact environment.
Transformative Quantum Technologies presents the Quantum for Environment Design Challenge (Q4Environment) to search for opportunities where quantum technology can impact the environment. This challenge is open to University of Waterloo undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.
The Q4Environment challenge is looking for well-motivated, quantum-based ideas that can lead to innovation in the environment. Environment, as used herein, is broad. We are hoping for ideas that span technologies from highly-selective chemical sensors for environmental monitoring to improved efficiency solar cells. The focus of this challenge is on the impacts that new technologies can have. The technology side should be well founded in the design proposal, but there is no expectation that it be reduced to practice. While no prototype is required, the design document should be convincing that the proposed solution’s impact is possible.
Teams need not have deep knowledge of quantum concepts or the environment but should have a basic understanding of what is possible. A series of information sessions will introduce both quantum concepts and environmental needs.
- Open to the UW community of undergraduate students, graduate students (including PSI masters students), and postdoctoral fellows
- Must be a team project; minimum team size is 2 (up to any number).
- All members of the team must have a current affiliation with UW (non-UW collaborators are ineligible to receive any fund disbursement)
- Technology side need not have been reduced to practice
- Possibility of proposed solution’s impact must be convincing
- Proposal must demonstrate basic knowledge and creativity in the environment and in quantum
Each team will submit a design document describing the form, operation, application and proposed impact of their idea.
Submissions will be judged on:
- the problem being addressed and its significance;
- team composition that reflects the expertise required to deliver on the interdisciplinary nature of the solution and best practices in equity, diversity and inclusion;
- impact of the proposed solution;
- market potential and economic feasibility.
A prototype is not required, but evidence of technical feasibility and manufacturability would be viewed favourably. Technical feasibility may refer to existing science and the novel application thereof in environment. References are not required but advantageous when describing a narrow aspect of science that may not be well known.
The design document shall be roughly five (5) pages in length and speak to both the quantum and environment communities (there will be reviewers drawn from both communities). The inclusion of at least one figure is desirable. The structure should follow the criteria bulleted above.
- Q4Environment Launch Event: June 6, 2023
- Q4Environment Team Registration Due: July 14, 2023
- Q4Environment Information Sessions: Ongoing
- Q4Environment Team-building Sessions: TBD
- Quantum For Environment at the Quantum Opportunities and Showcase: October 2023
- Q4Environment Design Submissions Due: February 2024
- Q4Environment Awards Announced: March 2024
- Q4Environment Awards: $5,000
- Honourable Mention(s): $500
Are you interested in sponsoring an award? Complete the sponsor form.
- Register now for the Q4Environment Launch Event
For questions regarding Q4Environment, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why Quantum for Environment
Quantum technologies allow us to perform tasks with more efficiency and greater precision than is possible in the classical world. Quantum solutions can achieve what would otherwise be impossible. It is compelling to mate these exciting new technologies with pressing environmental needs. Outcomes may include new high-performance sensors for environmental monitoring, remote sensors and technology enabling climate observations, as well as improved efficiency of solar cells and conventional electronics. There are also opportunities in quantum simulation, quantum computation and quantum technologies at the intersection of climate change and health. This design challenge is open to a broad range of environmental, climate and efficiency outcomes. Solutions may be applied to the earth’s subsurface, terrestrial, ocean, atmosphere and space. Through this challenge, TQT aims to uncover new ways quantum technologies might impact the environment in the near and long term. The focus is to bring forth ideas that expand the potential reach of quantum technologies, accelerating the path to a sustainable future.
Right Place to Do This
The UW community is the right resource to engage with to advance environmental technology, and UW is one of the very few places where the advances possible through quantum technology can be brought to life. Quantum and the environment are long-term priorities of UW and the Canadian Government. UW is internationally known for innovation and, specifically, as an innovation leader in the quantum field. The Institute for Quantum Computing at UW provides a unique environment to explore, learn and develop quantum science and engineering.