University of Cyprus: Creation of a new European Centre of Excellence at the University of Cyprus

Research Centre of Excellence “QSciTec”

This is the largest funding received for research and innovation that will establish Cyprus as a hub for quantum computing and technologies in the region.  The project coordinator is Professor Constantia Alexandrou of the Department of Physics.

The University of Cyprus announces that the proposal “Quantum Computing for Science and Technology (QSciTec)” has been selected for funding by the European Commission to create a Research Centre of Excellence and Innovation.  The selection for funding is the result of an extensive and highly competitive process by the European Commission under the strategic programme “Spreading Excellence and Widening Participation – Teaming”.  The aim of Teaming is to bridge the gap between highly developed countries in Research and Innovation and the rest of the world, by creating and supporting research centres of excellence and building new scientific networks that will create new opportunities for economic growth.

The evaluation of the proposals for the Centres of Excellence was carried out in two phases, based on strict selection criteria. In the first phase, 32 proposals were selected (out of more than 100 submitted) and invited to prepare a detailed proposal and business plan. In the second phase, 12 proposals were selected to establish the Centres of Excellence in different countries. The proposal for the creation of the QSciTec Centre of Excellence was ranked 4th among the 12 and the only one in Cyprus selected by the European Commission for funding.

Strategic cooperation with the Jülich Research Centre in Germany and the University of Padova in Italy

A key prerequisite for participation in the Teaming programme is the long-term and substantial cooperation with universities from countries that are leaders in the field of research and innovation.  In this effort, QSciTeC has as strategic partners the Jülich Research Centre and the University of Padova, which will provide support and guidance on best practices for the development of the centre, both in terms of basic research and in terms of know-how transfer and entrepreneurship. The University of Padova is a national hub in Italy for quantum technologies and the Jülich research centre has quantum computers and laboratories for the study of quantum materials.

Significant participation of ELECTI Consulting Ltd.

A partner in the project is the Cypriot company ELECTI which will develop ship sailing optimisation software for its customers. The development of software based on quantum algorithms will aim at increasing the competitiveness of the products offered and will be the model for transferring know-how from the centre to the private and semi-public sector.

Thematic topics of QSciTec

The Research Centre of Excellence “QSciTec” will carry out interdisciplinary research focusing on quantum computing, quantum materials and the optimisation of basic and applied research and innovation areas. The objective of the Centre of Excellence is to conduct world-class interdisciplinary research of high quality, to generate new knowledge and to apply it to solve practical problems in these applications.

A key focus of the “QSciTec” Research Centre of Excellence is the creation of the “Quantum Computing Innovation Hub” to provide research and innovation services to researchers and organisations involved in the use of quantum computing. Already a number of researchers and companies from Cyprus and abroad have declared their intention to collaborate with the centre.

Funding and creation of a critical mass of researchers

The proposal has secured funding of €15 million from the EU, with matching national funding, and € 5 million from the University of Cyprus, subject to the availability of funds in the state budget. Based on the business plan of “QSciTec” which has been submitted, a critical mass of researchers highly qualified in quantum technologies will be created, as well as a significant infrastructure for conducting pioneering research in this field. As a result, “QSciTec” will be able to attract additional research funds which will make it sustainable in the long term.

Research team of “QSciTec”

The research team of “QSciTec” is composed of academics from the Department of Physics and Chemistry of the University of Cyprus, with the participation of collaborators from various other departments of the University of Cyprus: Mathematics and Statistics, Computer Science, Economics, Business Administration and Public Administration, Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering. Specifically, the main body of the research team consists of Constantia Alexandrou, Charis Panagopoulos, Nikolaos Toumba, Grigoris Isko, Andreas Athonos, Theodosios Trypiniotis, Halil Saka, Anastasios Tasiopoulos, Halil Saka, and Anastasios Tasiopoulos, Sotirios Christodoulou, Nikos Savvas, Anna Filippou, Ioannis Dimopoulos, Andros Kourtello, Christos Nikolaidis, Triantafyllos Stylianopoulos, Vasilios Vavourakis, Ioannis Krikidis, Charalambos Charalambous and Christoforos Hadjikostis. The project is coordinated by Professor Constantia Alexandrou of the Department of Physics of the University of Cyprus.

According to the coordinator of “QSciTec”, Professor Konstantia Alexandrou, “the development of the “QSciTec” Research Centre will create in Cyprus an ecosystem of research and innovation in emerging quantum technologies, an area of research where Cyprus lags behind. QSciTec will connect universities, technology companies and end-users, governmental organisations, as well as entrepreneurship promotion companies. This collaborative network will bring new employment opportunities for young people, as well as new ideas for economic growth in Cyprus.

The Rector of the University of Cyprus, Professor Tasos Christofides, said that “The great success of “QSciTeC” shows the high level of research conducted at the University of Cyprus as well as the organization’s commitment to bring science, technology and their applications closer to society. In the coming years, “QSciTec” is expected to employ a significant number of new researchers, while modern infrastructure, new research activities and collaborations with other research institutions, companies and governmental organisations are expected to be established.

QSciTeC is the fourth centre of excellence coordinated by the University of Cyprus, while the University is a partner in a fifth.

Source: University of Cyprus | Latest news (