Research Areas

Affiliated Research Centers

Chicago Quantum Exchange researchers and institutions, as pioneers in advancing quantum information science (QIS), lead multiple nationally funded quantum centers.


The goals of the Quantum Leap Challenge Institute for Quantum Sensing for Biophysics and Bioengineering (QuBBE) are twofold: to pioneer new ways to use quantum technology in biology, and to develop the quantum workforce through STEM education and outreach. There are two scientific challenges the institute is designed to address. The first is to make quantum sensing systems sensitive enough to pick up the changes scientists want to measure, and to ignore everything else. The second challenge is to make sure scientists are measuring what they intend to measure, since the scales are so small. Thus the institute’s goal is to develop ways to integrate quantum sensing along with more traditional imaging, so that scientists can first understand where the probe is in the cell and then get readings from the quantum sensors. 

Headquartered at the University of Chicago and in partnership with Chicago State University, the University of Illinois at Chicago and Harvard University, the institute will be funded for five years. 


Led by Argonne National Laboratory, Q-NEXT includes DOE national laboratories, universities, and leading U.S. quantum technology companies. Partner organizations are leaders in many areas of QIS, including quantum information theory, high-performance computation, quantum experimental science, basic discovery science, advanced computing and high energy physics. Q-NEXT focuses on how to reliably control, store, and transmit quantum information at distances that could be as small as a computer chip or as large as the distance between Chicago and San Francisco.

Chicago Quantum Exchange institutions that participate in Q-NEXT include Argonne National Laboratory, University of Chicago, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Northwestern University, and many corporate partners.

SQMS Center

Led by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, the Superconducting Quantum Materials and Systems Center includes Ames National Laboratory, Northwestern University, Rigetti Computing, and 16 other leading institutions in QIS. While developing a beyond-state-of-the-art quantum computer, SQMS Center also focuses on the development and optimization of new quantum sensors based on superconducting technology for uses in quantum computing, scientific research, and other applications.

Chicago Quantum Exchange institutions that participate in SQMS include Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Northwestern University, and others.


The Quantum Leap Challenge Institute for Hybrid Quantum Architectures and Networks (HQAN) is an NSF-funded organization that brings together multidisciplinary researchers and diverse partners to advance scientific, technological, and workforce development goals. HQAN researchers focus on developing technology to connect different quantum devices within a network, engineering new types of quantum nodes, and developing a solution to employ a distributed quantum computing network, a potential way to address scaling issues in quantum computing. HQAN partner institutions also focus on workforce development, with education, internship, and retraining opportunities at multiple levels of education and professional careers.

Chicago Quantum Exchange institutions that participate in HQAN include University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, University of Chicago, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and many corporate partners.

Energy Frontier Research Centers