Quantum in conversation
Press release issued: 7 July 2017
In collaboration with artist/historian Milica Prokic, the team at the University of Bristol’s Quantum Engineering Technology Labs (QET Labs) is engaging in a conversation about quantum research, its implications, and its impact on our world.
In the near future our world will be revolutionised by quantum technology.
This calls for a timely conversation about quantum photonics concepts, technologies and engineering between quantum researchers and scholars across fields, artists, and most importantly, the wider public.
In order to keep moving in an inclusive way, this conversation needs to unfold in many inter-disciplinary dialects.
In collaboration with artist/historian Milica Prokic, the team at the University of Bristol’s Quantum Engineering Technology Labs (QET Labs) is contributing to this initiative by engaging in a conversation about quantum research, its implications, and its impact on our world.
This on-going collaborative project began with a single illustration of a story about quantum entanglement, told to Milica by QET Labs’ PhD student Imad Faruque.
The project then continued to develop through conversations with other QET Labs researchers, whose narratives provided Milica with material for a series of illustrations.
Building on these visuals and the archived conversations and correspondence with the researchers, the online platform Quantum in Conversationwas created as an invitation to the public to join in the conversation.
The most recent development of the collaboration between Milica and the QET Labs team is the concept of a quantum graphic novel; for Milica, all of this is very exciting.
She said: “I am an artist/historian, trained to think in ‘tangible’ terms, to work with tangible objects, and to study the past. Interviewing a number of quantum scientists, who work on shaping the future of our world was absolutely fascinating.
“I came into the conversation knowing nothing about their field, so the challenge was twofold: to keep the lid on my own new-found quantum fascination, and to understand at least a glimpse of how it works.”
Dr Caroline Clark, QET Labs Centre Manager, said: “For our students and researchers, the challenge was to communicate their work entirely in layman’s terms.
“This kind of conversation is a very useful writing and communication exercise, as research papers written in a widely approachable style are often highly cited; I certainly hope that this will be another outcome of our conversations.
“Moreover, compelled to craft a simple, yet precise narrative about something so complex, our researchers proved to be gifted storytellers, coming up with all sorts of metaphors and references to explain complex scientific concepts. I look forward to the next stage of the project - a quantum graphic novel.”
You can pose your questions and comments about the world of quantum to Milica and the QET Labs team by visiting their blog and joining in the conversation at https://quantumtalksblog.wordpress.com/
Quantum Engineering Technology Labs (QETLabs)
The mission of QETLabs is to take quantum science discoveries out of the labs and engineer them into technologies for the benefit of society. It brings together £50 million worth of activity that covers theoretical quantum physics through experiment, engineering and skills and training toward concept demonstrators of quantum technologies.
Bristol Quantum Information Institute
Quantum information and its translation into technologies is one of the most exciting research activities in science and technology today. Long at the forefront of the growing worldwide activity in this area, the Bristol Quantum Information Institute crystalises our research across the entire spectrum, from theory to technology. With our expert cross-disciplinary team, including founders of the field, we have expertise in all major areas of theoretical quantum information science and in experiment. We foster partnerships with the private sector and provide superb teaching and training for the future generation of quantum scientists and engineers and the prototypes of tomorrow.