Launching an Expression of Interest call to develop and deliver quantum computing testbeds in the UK

As the national centre for quantum computing, the NQCC seeks to drive the development of the UK’s quantum computing capabilities and infrastructure. Through a call for proposals, the NQCC is planning to commission a number of projects to develop and deliver quantum computing testbeds (prototype quantum computers). Establishing quantum computing testbeds is a vital part of building the UK’s quantum computing capabilities, enabling the technology to be demonstrated and showcased.   

The objective of the initiative is to deliver quantum computing testbeds for the purpose of characterisation, benchmarking, verification and exploratory applications development. These activities align to the NQCC’s strategic role in helping to build the UK’s assured quantum computing infrastructure as an informed user of related product and services.  

The competition is being delivered in partnership with Innovate UK in two stages:

(i) an EOI call issued through the NQCC today;
(ii) a full competition delivered by Innovate UK, due to launch in September 2023.

The EOI stage will allow innovators to share some initial information and gain feedback to ensure alignment with the NQCC ahead of the full call for proposals in September.

Purpose of the EOI call

The purpose of the EOI stage is to allow innovators to share some initial information with the NQCC on their proposals for a testbed. Based on this information, the NQCC will then be able to provide brief, qualitative feedback to potential applicants ahead of the full call for proposals, which is due to launch in September 2023. This feedback process will enable the NQCC to ensure that proposals align with the technical aspects of the competition and its requirements.


To lead a project, you can: 

  • be an organisation of any size that is UK registered or has a UK registered office
  • work alone or with others from business, research organisations, research and technology organisations or the third sector, that are UK registered or have a UK registered office, as subcontractors. 

SBRI competitions are open to all eligible organisations that can demonstrate a route to market for their solution. Under current regulations, SBRI contracts are open to applications from organisations registered in the UK, European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA). Due to the security requirements for this competition all organisations will need to be registered in the UK or have a UK registered office. 

Quantum Computing Testbed 

The NQCC will consider proposals for both gate-based and analog quantum computing testbeds.  

The testbed can be a prototype or development platform, but must be stable and well-characterised. The system may comprise components and sub-systems that in of themselves can be tested as part of the integrated whole, but which affords characterisation and benchmarking of the system-level performance.

The system may therefore be a testbed in every sense, but most importantly, operates at system level as a testbed for running quantum algorithms or analog quantum processes.  

How to apply

Interested parties are requested to submit a short EOI form, which is available on request as part of the full briefing pack. No funding will be allocated as part of the initial EOI stage and the submitted EOI will not contribute to the score of the full call. Please note that the EOI call is not intended as a sift process, rather it aims to establish alignment with the NQCC, providing an opportunity for innovators to gain feedback, ahead of the main call for proposals in September.

Contact us at to request a full briefing pack, including an EOI form.