NSF PREM for Innovations in Materials, Processes, and Applications for Quantum Technologies (NSF PREM IMPAQT)
The NSF PREM for Innovations in Materials, Processes, and Applications for Quantum Technologies (NSF PREM IMPAQT) is a Partnership for Research and Education in Materials (PREM) between Florida International University (FIU) and the 2D Crystal Consortium Materials Innovation Platform (2DCC-MIP) at The Pennsylvania State University (Penn State). NSF PREM IMPAQT will focus on fundamental and practical aspects of new 2D materials and processes that can be transformative in quantum science.
The interdisciplinary research, conducted by a dedicated team of faculty and students, focuses on uncovering phenomena related to quantum emission in two-dimensional (2D) materials, realizing 2D materials-based quantum converters, and understanding the mechanical properties governing the interfaces between the 2D quantum materials and the substrates supporting their integration into future quantum devices. Organized in three major thrusts, the collaborative research will focus on: (1) Novel 2D quantum dots for developing Single Photon Emitters useful in Quantum Science; (2) Layered crystals with optical nonlinearity for developing 2D quantum frequency converters; and (3) Mechanical behavior of stand-alone and substrate-deposited 2D materials, assisted by predictive models to support 2D materials discovery and atomic-level characterization of 2D materials. The PREM team will perform advanced characterization of materials developed in each thrust to validate their quality and select those with predicted long-term resilience for future quantum devices. The user facilities at FIU and 2DCC will accelerate quantum materials discovery and enable cross-disciplinary student training.
FIU-2DCC PREM will integrate the transformative research with innovative education and outreach to promote recruitment and participation of over 30 Ph.D., over 20 M.S. and over 40 B.S. students. At FIU, designated as both Hispanic Serving Institution and Minority Serving Institution, more than 80% of students are from an underrepresented or underserved minority group in STEM and, thus, the center is uniquely positioned to recruit and train a diverse graduate student population in materials for the future quantum science workforce.
NSF PREM IMPAQT aims to function as a science and education platform between FIU and 2DCC with the goal of increasing diversity in materials research. The students will be immersed in a research-intensive environment to gain expertise in quantum materials research and will be provided with a 360-degree toolkit for success, comprising dual mentoring by faculty at both institutions, access to experts and instrumentation, and career skills training. Through the student exchange initiative, the team will grow in diversity and drive innovative problem-solving. Through the PREM, FIU will become a materials research hub in South Florida while enriching the collaborative partnership with 2DCC MIP at Penn State. The research outcomes will be disseminated through peer-reviewed articles and conference presentations, and the student success will be publicized through the dedicated project website and outreach events.
The partnership will pave the way for scalable quantum computing with potential to deliver significant societal progress and will lead to a sustainable pipeline of minority students and women joining the materials science workforce.