The University of NSW will offer a world-first bachelor degree in quantum engineering, citing the need to grow local skills in an industry predicted to be worth as much as $4 billion in Australia within two decades.
The first intake for the Bachelor of Quantum Engineering (Honours) degree will be Term 3 this year. UNSW Scientia Professor Andrea Morello was described by the university as the “driving force” behind the degree.
According to Morello there aren’t enough quantum engineers — who work in “the microelectronic and microwave engineering of the 21st century — in Australia or anywhere in the world to meet demand.
“It is not science fiction: you can already buy quantum-dot TVs and quantum-enabled mobile phones in the shops, right now,” said Morello.
“Developing and applying the cutting-edge technologies in these fields demands a deep understanding of their quantum nature. Moreover, this understanding can also be used to develop devices and capabilities that have no precedent, like quantum computers and quantum secure telecommunications. This is why we created the new degree.”
According to a forecast by CSIRO, quantum technology could be worth up to $4 billion in Australia by 2040, and create 16,000 new jobs. Within a collection of quantum technologies — including sensing, electronics and communications — quantum computing is “the largest long-term opportunity, with potential to create 10,000 jobs and A$2.5 billion in annual revenue.”
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