QUANTUM spins delight at exhibit premiere

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Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim

The quantum revolution is here and on Thursday, Oct. 13. a select group of local dignitaries and media were welcomed as the first to view a new exhibition all about it.

The premier of QUANTUM: The Exhibition welcomed local politicians MPP Daiene Vernile, MP Bardish Chagger, and  Mayor of Waterloo Dave Jaworsky, who wore timely Oktoberfest lederhosen. The exhibit was created as part of the celebrations for Canada’s 150th anniversary. After its premiere in Kitchener, the displays will tour all over Canada with the goal of educating and demonstrating the wonders of quantum science.

The crowd was welcomed with video greetings from UW President Feridun Hamdullahpur, world renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. All three emphasized the importance of quantum research.

Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim

Trudeau expressed his pride in Canadian scientific research, saying, “Today, the ‘quantum revolution’ is upon us and Canadian researchers are helping lead the way. QUANTUM: The Exhibition celebrates Canadian scientists and what we have accomplished so far. A quantum future is coming, Canada is a big part of it and as you may know, I’m really excited about it!”

Hawking, who once helped direct exhibition contributor International Quantum Centre (IQC), told the audience, “The exhibition you are about to experience demonstrates how the scientists and their research advances the understanding of science and discovery.”

Hamdullahpur congratulated the IQC, located on UW campus, for it’s tireless effort in advancing quantum research and education.

Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim

“We believe IQC at the University of Waterloo is a leading example of how a modern, progressive university can take the lead for Canada in strategic frontier disciplines and industries,” Hamdullahpur said. “Thank you to all IQC students, whose fascination and experience with quantum science is changing the world around us.”

Right from the start, QUANTUM: The Exhibition welcomed visitors of any level of experience, with informative but inviting displays and interative features. The stories of scientists like Einstein, Schrodinger, Dirac, and Planck were scattered throughout the exhibit to help tell the story of quantum theory’s past.

Guests lingered around exhibits featuring games that demonstrated quantum theories and applications. People lined up to play Quantum Cats, created by UW Games Institute students. Reminiscent of Angry Birds and inspired by Schrodinger’s cat, players must choose between three superpositions for a cat in order to knock down boxes to win the game.

Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim

Another game from the Games Institute was The Binary Challenge, a switch-based puzzle game that uses boolean terms to help turn on a giant lightbulb.

Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim

The Quantum Cryptography display was surrounded by a crowd of visitors eager to learn about the infallibility of quantum protection and the future possibilities of large-scale information teleportation. The exhibit demonstrated how information can be converted into quantum components called qubits and that these components can be physically moved. In fact, a group from Canada was the first to transport information over 100 km this way.

QUANTUM: The Exhibition aims to inspire the next generation of scientists and innovators, but it brings all ages and backgrounds into learning and understanding what quantum technology will mean for Canada and the world. The quantum revolution has begun, and all Canadians are invited.

Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim
Photo by Theresa Shim

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