M Squared is a global quantum technology company and quantum technology systems integrator – the first choice for world-leading research institutions and innovation partners.
We have enabled the quantum technology community since 2006 with our award-winning laser platform, SolsTiS, the backbone of the majority of quantum technology systems and experiments. Our products have underpinned some of the world’s most accurate clocks at JILA and NIST and some of the highest-impact Quantum computing research programs in the world at the universities of Innsbruck, Wisconsin and Oxford.
Today, we are at the heart of the international supply chain, developing components, sub-systems, and sensors for commercial quantum applications including quantum gravimeters and accelerometers.Download our quantum technology brochure
M Squared is commercialising quantum-based gravimeters that are based on the atom interferometer, which can detect and measure atomic interference – a manifestation of wave-particle duality that matter can display when it is in a quantum state at temperatures just above absolute zero. The quantum gravimeter, which uses our novel lasers, control and vacuum systems, harnesses quantum technology for gravitational measurements and the detection of the gravitational disturbances caused by hidden objects.
Our gravimeters will have applications in are many sectors, from the detection of new oil and gas deposits, surveying unknown ‘underground’ infrastructures such as pipes and cables, monitoring the water table and preventing flooding and geological surveying. Graph/figure caption: The gravimeter measures a phase shift ∆ that is proportional to the local value of acceleration due to gravity, or ‘small g’. This phase shift measurement is enabled by a precisely tailored sequence of laser pulses that split, mirror and recombine a cloud of ultra-cold atoms to form an atom interferometer.Download our quantum gravimeter explainer
A quantum gravimeter measures the vertical acceleration of a cloud of ultra-cold atoms. Extending this idea to all three spatial dimensions results in a 3D quantum accelerometer; a device that uses atom interferometry to precisely measure accelerations in any direction. Combining this with quantum gyroscopes and clocks will enable a navigation device that is highly accurate and completely independent of satellite navigation systems.
M Squared is helping to develop the UK’s first commercial 3D quantum accelerometer with collaborators at Imperial College London.We are perfecting the ‘quantum hardware’ that is required to transform this currently lab-based concept into a fully commercialised quantum sensor - one that will be accurate and robust enough to supplant current state of the art navigation systems. For example, the accelerometer requires a laser system that can produce the complicated sequences of optical pulses that create and manipulate quantum superpositions of cold atoms, the essential feature of an atom interferometer.
M Squared has developed a laser system that is perfectly tailored to this demanding task; two phase-locked lasers produce a beam with a unique combination of high power, exceptionally low noise and a high degree of tunability, all essential ingredients in realising a highly sensitive 3D quantum accelerometer.
With optical clocks based on neutral atoms, the reference laser interrogates atoms that are distributed amongst an ‘optical lattice’ of trapping sites. This arrangement freezes out much of the motion of the atoms, enabling their resonant frequency, and therefore time, to be measured with unprecedented precision.
Using novel laser sources, control systems and vacuum chambers, M Squared is developing a strontium lattice clock that will be more mobile and compact than the lab-sized systems that constitute the current state of the art. The optical lattice itself is created by forming a standing wave of light from a low-noise and high-power laser – these requirements make M Squared’s SolsTiS platform the ‘lattice laser’ of choice for time standards laboratories around the world.
M Squared has a long history of working with labs developing the world’s most accurate clocks, for example the National Physical Laboratory (UK), NIST, JILA (both USA), SYRTE (France), RIKEN (Japan), the National Metrology Institute of Germany (PTB), the Time and Frequency Laboratory (INRIM) in Italy and the East China Normal University (ECNU).
In quantum computing, information is processed using quantum bits, or “qubits”. A qubit can be represented by a single cold atom. Quantum logic operations, which are used to implement calculations with a number of qubits, are realised via finely tuned laser fields that interact with the atomic energy levels. M Squared has developed laser systems that exhibit the low-noise and high degree of tunability required to implement logic operations with a sufficiently low error rate for quantum computation to be practical.
Using our SolsTiS platform, Professor Saffman at the University of Wisconsin has demonstrated logic operations with neutral atom qubits with a world-leading error rate. For qubits based on trapped ions, we have developed a phase-locked laser system that is used by Professor Lucas at the University of Oxford and Professor Blatt at the University of Innsbruck to conduct world-leading research in practical quantum computation.
For trapped ion quantum computing, the electric fields that are used to trap the ions must be modified in order to shuttle the ions between distinct locations, such as specific zones for memory or logic operations. M Squared is developing the low-noise and high-speed electronics that are required to shuttle the ions between these zones without destroying the delicate quantum information that is stored in each ion. We are also developing the technologies that will be required to realise a ‘quantum network’ of distinct processing nodes, such as single photon sources and frequency conversion modules conversion modules.
M Squared works with game changers, leading researchers, organisations and governments to accelerate the exploitation of quantum science. We are a founding industry member of the UK National Quantum Technology Programme, through which we work in close collaboration with the UK Quantum Technology Hubs, supplying indispensable equipment, resource and engineering know-how. We are also an Industrial Member of the European Commission’s Quantum Technology Flagship Expert Group and on the board of the UK Knowledge Transfer Network’s Quantum Technologies Special Interest Group (QT SIG) helping to shape the quantum landscape.
We first developed a magneto-optical trap (MOT) in 2015, which was the precursor to our atom interferometer, launched in 2016 - both UK industry firsts.
Our atom interferometer enables high-precision measurements of the influences of motion, gravity as well as magnetic and electric fields on clouds of cold rubidium atoms, which act as sensors. These clouds of atoms are held in place inside a vacuum chamber and are cooled down to be barely above absolute zero (in a MOT), colder than deep space. This atom interferometer is at the heart of a number of our quantum technologies.
We have also developed instrumentation to control the complex measurement sequences required for atom interferometry and gravity measurement applications. Our ‘Ice Bloc DCS’, a digital controller and sequencer, was the first product to emerge from the UK Quantum Technology Programme.
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