BMBF launches research program for quantum systems

Ionenfalle für eine photonische Atomuhr höchster Genauigkeit. Bild: Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt

The research program Quantum Systems – Developing cutting-edge technology. Shaping the Future. sets the strategic framework for the research funding of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in the future technologies of photonics and quantum technologies over the next ten years. The program is stringently geared to a mission that will be measured by ambitious milestones.


The program aims to lead Germany to the top of the world in quantum computing and quantum sensing technology over the next ten years in alliance with Europe and to expand Germany’s competitiveness in quantum systems.

In addition, it aims to secure Germany’s and Europe’s technological sovereignty in quantum systems, use quantum systems to exploit the opportunities of technological change for the economy and society and promote their sustainability.


Photonics and quantum technologies have great importance for solving societal challenges. A foretaste of this is provided by photonic technologies such as lasers, light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and photovoltaics, which are improving life and work in many areas already today. New solutions from photonics and quantum technologies will make a great contribution to the faster development of new materials and active substances and to better and more quickly cure diseases. They will make communication faster and help us to live, produce and move around more resource-efficiently in the future. This is also where the quantum systems research program comes in play and aims to bring these new technologies into application.

Photonics and quantum technologies have both developed from fundamental research in quantum physics and are thematically interlinked. In many cases, modern photonics enables the development of quantum technological solutions in the first place. The networking of the players, the joint research of technological components, the bundling and effective use of resources are important factors for the successful development of both fields. In order to develop synergies in a targeted manner, the BMBF is funding both topics together for the first time with the Quantum Systems research program.

Fields of action

  1. Pushing technological boundaries – researching and further developing quantum systems
    Numerous scientific and technological challenges must be mastered if the diverse possibilities of quantum systems are to be used for the economy and society. It is necessary both to master the important basic technologies and to create new possibilities for the economic realisation of practical quantum systems.
  2. Bringing Quantum Systems into Use – Advancing Solutions for Economy and Society
    Research into quantum systems opens up completely new perspectives for solving economic and social challenges. The spectrum ranges from more powerful components for the networked world over innovative tools for production or combating diseases to solutions for sustainable energy generation, sustainable use of resources and climate protection.
  3. Shaping ecosystems – creating new innovation chains, attracting the best minds, taking people with them
    Quantum systems need technology landscapes that encompass all stages of the innovation and value chain. Gaps in the innovation chain must be closed and cooperations along this chain must be initiated. The best minds from different disciplines must be attracted to quantum systems and the next generation of skilled workers must be secured on a broad basis. And last but not least, a technology that potentially changes people’s lives profoundly should also be understood in its consequences, publicly discussed and sufficiently accepted.

Program is based on Agenda Quantensysteme 2030.

For more information, see the Research Program Quantum Systems brochure (in German).

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