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COLLEGE STATION --

The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents has approved a concept to create the Institute of Quantum Studies (IQS) within the College of Science at Texas A&M University.

The IQS would support educational training programs and strengthen research programs in the area of quantum studies, noted H. Joseph Newton, interim dean of the College of Science, in the concept proposal for the new institute.

The main goals of the IQS are to promote interdisciplinary and collaborative research in quantum science, to develop an intellectual community among faculty, graduate students, and advanced undergraduates, to enhance interaction by means of conferences, lectures and colloquia, and to disseminate the knowledge generated within the IQS through scholarly publications and public outreach.

The IQS also will support new faculty hires through funding from the university as well as from related industrial and research contract sources, Newton added.

"At present, many of the faculty in quantum science are nearing retirement," he said. "While the number of young scientists in this revolutionary area of research is limited, many of the best are taking jobs in industrial and consulting companies rather than academia. It is imperative that Texas A&M University begin making hires at the present time in order to avoid the sellers market coming in the very near future (next five to 10 years)."

Potential activities of the IQS would include work on faster computation, faster searches of databases, ultra fast data processing, production of media with ultra-high indices of refraction, and new analog to digital device systems.

The research activities at the IQS will be based on world-class excellence in quantum physics and engineering at Texas A&M in the departments of physics, chemistry, computer science, electrical engineering, mathematics, mechanical engineering, and nuclear engineering, encompassing the College of Science, the College of Engineering, and the Texas Engineering Experiment Station.

"A scientific advisory group will be formed by the heads of the different laboratories in the institute," Newton said.

The laboratories in the IQS would include the Texas Laser Laboratory, the Laboratory for Novel Optical Materials, the Laboratory for Quantum Informatics, and the Laboratory for Quantum Nucleonics.

The IQS will collaborate with other major Texas universities, such as Rice and the University of Texas at Austin, as well as with industrial companies such as Texas Instruments and Raytheon, Newton said.

The IQS would also extend already-existing institutional partnering with Germany's Max-Planck Institut fuer Quantenoptik, the U.S. National Institute for Science and Technology (NIST), and Russia's Lebedev Institute.

Contact: H. Joseph Newton, (979) 845 - 7361 or jnewton@stat.tamu.edu or Patrice Pages, (979) 845 4618 or patrice-pages@tamu.edu.

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