Commercialising quantum technologies challenge

This challenge is investing £153 million, supported by £205 million from industry, to develop new products and technologies based on advances in quantum science.

We’re building on the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme to drive innovation across a range of sectors including automotive, healthcare, infrastructure, telecommunications, cybersecurity and defence.

The challenge will comprise four areas to support the UK quantum industry:

  • product and service innovations: funding for collaborative research and innovation, aiming to deliver new quantum-enabled product and service innovations
  • industry-led technology development projects: a programme of industry-led research activities, each addressing specific challenges
  • supply chain: a series of feasibility projects looking at innovative components and supply chain elements across the quantum sector
  • investment accelerator: supporting early-stage, spin-out and start-up quantum technologies companies to secure venture capital.

Contact the challenge team for any queries at

Find funding opportunities

You can use our funding finder to search for ISCF funding and any wider opportunities related to quantum technologies.

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Funded and announced projects

We have produced three videos presenting challenge projects and business innovators:

In June 2020 38 new projects were announced for funding, representing £70 million of investment. These projects include:

  • Quantum-enabled sensors to reduce greenhouse gas emissions: QLM, a Bristol start-up, is working with BP and the National Grid to develop quantum-enabled gas sensors that detect industrial leaks
  • One of the world’s first quantum computer operating systems: Riverlane, a leading UK quantum software company, is partnering with the chip designer Arm and the UK’s leading computing hardware start-ups to develop an innovative operating system which will be used across all major quantum computing hardware.

The Pioneer projects

In 2018 we invested £20 million of ‘pioneer’ funding, supporting the development of four prototype quantum-enabled devices:

Underground survey sensor

RSK is leading a project with a consortium of businesses and universities to use quantum sensors to detect objects underground – helping road and rail construction projects to avoid unexpected obstructions

Atomic clock back-up

Manufacturer Teledyne e2V is leading a project to develop a prototype of a miniature atomic clock, as a back-up for crucial infrastructure services if the current standard timing service, Global Navigation Satellite Systems, is disrupted

Secure encryption

Toshiba Research Europe is leading a project to develop the UK supply of low-cost integrated chips, enabling more secure transmission of data using new encryption technologies

Keeping data safe

Cyber security company ArQit is creating advanced receivers to pick up quantum key signal, flagging to companies if the data they are transmitting has been accessed by others.

Last updated: 21 November 2022

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