The 6th edition of the annual ESA ScyLight Conference for Optical and Quantum Technologies successfully took place on 15-16 May 2023 at Eugenides Foundation in Athens, Greece, followed by a Workshop on Quantum Internet on the 17th of May in the city of Kalavryta.
This year’s ScyLight Conference was co-organised and hosted by the European Space Agency (ESA), the Greek Ministry of Digital Governance and the General Secretariat of Telecommunications and Post. The conference was supported by the HellasQCI project which builds the National Quantum Communication Infrastructure of Greece, the City of Kalavryta and the National Observatory of Athens (NOA).
During the event, more than 190 European, American and Canadian industry experts, researchers, academics and end users attended to share their expertise, discuss and plan the future of optical and quantum communication technologies.
The Conference began with welcome speeches addressed by: Dr. Athanassios Staveris, Secretary General of Telecommunications & Posts, Dr. Francisco–Javier Benedicto Ruiz, ESA Director of Navigation, Dr. Ηarald Hauschildt, ESA Program Manager for the ARTES ScyLight Program, Dr. Spyros Vasilakos, Director of IAASARS and Vice President of NOA and Dr. Dimitrios Kagklis, Head of Directorate of Wireless Communications, 5G Networks and Space of the General Secretariat of Telecommunications & Post.
Dr. Ilias Papastamatiou, senior Project Manager at GRNET and HellasQCI Project Coordinator, after the welcoming speeches, gave an overview of the EuroQCI initiative and the HellasQCI project and moderated the 1st panel of the conference which was consisted of key players from public and private sectors (GRNET – Dr. Ilias Papastamatiou, NOA – Dr. Haris Kontoes, Motor Oil Group – Mr. Panagiotis Georgiou and Lasting Software – Mr. Daniel Zirmer) as early adopters of the new emerging technologies on quantum and optical communications.
Dr. Papastamatiou, during his introductory remarks welcomed on behalf of the HellasQCI consortium and GRNET, the ScyLight Conference and appreciated ESA and the Ministry of Digital Governance and the General Secretariat of Telecommunication and Posts for hosting this year’s conference in Greece. The discussions at the panel were productive and significant challenges were identified for the early users of quantum and optical communications. Nevertheless, the added value of these technologies outmatch the challenges: advantages in cybersecurity, protection of critical infrastructures, enhancement of scientific capabilities and safeguarding of sensitive data are key reasons for the public and private sectors to move towards the quantum era.
During the two first days of the conference in Athens, several HellasQCI partners delivered speeches followed by Q&A sessions: Dr. Manolis Xilouris (IAASARS / NOA), Dr. Giannis Giannoulis (ICCS / NTUA) and Dr. Deirdre Kilbane (WIT / SETU).
The third day of the conference took place in Kalavryta city. The Mayor of the City Athanasios I. Papadopoulos and the Director and President of NOA Dr. Manolis Plionis launched the Workshop on Quantum Internet. Assistant Professor at the NKUA and HellasQCI Technical Coordinator Dr. Georgios Kanellos delivered a keynote speech on the road towards quantum communication at National and European level.
Over the three days of ScyLight Conference, exceptional speakers with expertise on Quantum and Optical Communications, from public and private sectors, offered and exchanged their knowledge, shaping the future of Quantum Communication Infrastructures in Europe, in the spectrum of EuroQCI, as well as globally.
Moreover, HellasQCI partners from the National Quantum Communication Infrastructures of Ireland (IrelandQCI), Cyprus (CYQCI) and Bulgaria (BGQCI), attended the conference contributing with exchanging expertise and valuable technical knowledge amongst the four National Quantum Communication Infrastructures (NatQCIs), bringing robust and interoperable Quantum Networks and Technologies contributing to a successful EuroQCI.
HellasQCI also provided a dedicated branded booth at the conference, hosting specialists from the project’s consortium (GRNET, NCSR Demokritos and Qubitech). HellasQCI through its participation at the conference started the establishment of the HellasQCI Community which will consist of national stakeholders on quantum and optical technologies.
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More information on the ScyLight Conference can be found here.
More information on the HellasQCI project can be found here.