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Rome Lab to benefit as AFRL is designated as a quantum information science research center

By Eric Reinhardt (


The flag-display area at the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Information Directorate in Rome, a facility referred to locally as Rome Lab. AFRL is now designated a quantum information science research center. (Photo credit: Air Force Research Laboratory website)

ROME, N.Y. — Rome Lab will secure funding as the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) is now designated as the quantum information science (QIS) research center for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force.

AFRL is headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio. AFRL’s Information Directorate is in Rome and known locally as Rome Lab.

This designation gives AFRL the authority to achieve “faster military capability” based on quantum information science, Maj. Gen. Heather Pringle, AFRL commander, said.

The designation was signed by John Roth, then Acting Secretary of the Air Force, in an April 23 memorandum.

“AFRL is extremely proud and has been long-recognized at the national level for its deep technical expertise in QIS with far-ranging applications including clocks and sensors for quantum-enhanced positioning, navigation and timing, quantum communications and networks, and quantum computing,” Pringle said. “This designation allows AFRL to expand its collaborations across government, industry and academia, further accelerating the research, development and deployment of quantum technologies.”

To support these efforts, Rome Lab will receive fiscal year 2020 funds, granted under the Defense Quantum Information Science Research and Development program and in accordance with the National Defense Authorization Act, the U.S. Air Force said in a news release about the designation.

The funds help the Rome Lab obtain partnerships to gain further knowledge from worldwide leaders in quantum science application, Michael Hayduk, Information Directorate deputy director, said.

“With this designation, AFRL fully intends to further advance the application of quantum technologies across the Department of the Air Force,” Hayduk said. “AFRL will expand its global network of QIS collaborators by tapping into both industrial and university expertise. These partnerships are critical in not only accelerating the deployment of QIS technologies but also in developing the future workforce needed to meet emerging national security challenges.”

“Rome Lab is truly a world class hub of high-tech research and innovation,” U.S. Representative Claudia Tenney (R–New Hartford) said. “The Lab’s new designation by the U.S. Air Force as a Quantum Information Science Research Center will open up new federal funding opportunities for Rome and further cement our region’s position as a leader in the critically important field of quantum technology. This win for our community is the result of continued collaboration between federal, state, and local officials who work closely with strong advocates like the CNY Defense Alliance.”




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