Sheffield start-up secures £1.4million to develop secure quantum communications

Stephen Chapman's picture

AegiQ, a spin-out company from Sheffield University, has won £1.4m to build satellites which are resistant to hacking by quantum computers.

The investment from Innovate UK is being used to build a semiconductor platform for quantum telecommunications.

The company will now join a global pilot project to provide scalable, high-performing semiconductor technology for next generation telecoms. 

“Existing software-based encryption of telecom networks is vulnerable to quantum attack,” commented Scott Dufferwiel, AegiQ’s CTO.

“The risks are losing control of our communications and being faced with massively compromised security from quantum hackers. With the rise of quantum computing, standard encryption methods are no longer fit for purpose. A wide range of industries will require these quantum solutions in the near term.”

Quantum cryptography is viewed by the telecoms industry as the key to future-proofing security .

“Thousands of AegiQ systems will be required in each data centre around the world, as they transition to using quantum technologies for communication and cloud computing,” explained CEO and co-founder, Dr Max Sich.

“Deploying our scalable technology with mass production capabilities into initiatives like this project will position the UK as a world-leader in manufacturing quantum communications.”

AegiQ is currently raising its seed round of investment. The Innovate UK funding will also enable AegiQ to invest in the further R&D and production of its technology, which underpin technology used in areas such as quantum communications, quantum sensing and information processing.