Raymond Laflamme

Raymond Laflamme
Faculty, Executive Director, Canada Research Chair

Raymond Laflamme was born in Quebec City and did his undergraduate studies in Physics at Universite Laval. He then moved to Cambridge, England, where he survived Part III of Mathematical Tripos before earning his PhD in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics (DAMTP) under the direction of Stephen Hawking. Laflamme and Don Page are responsible for having changed Hawking's mind on the direction of time in a contracting Universe (as described in Hawking’s best-seller "A Brief History of Time"). After his PhD, Laflamme became a Killam post-doctoral fellow at the University of British Columbia, where he met his future wife Janice Gregson. He moved back to Cambridge in 1990 as a Research Fellow at Peterhouse. He finally settled down for nine years at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He arrived as a postdoctoral fellow, then became an Oppenheimer Fellow in 1994, just after the birth of his son Patrick. His daughter Jocelyne was born in 1995. In 2001 he joined the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics as a founding member. He has founded the Institute for Quantum Computing with Michele Mosca and has been its Director since 2002.

The institute has grown to more than 150 researchers as of 2012. Laflamme holds a Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Quantum Information, he directs the Quantum Information program at the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. He is a respected pioneer and leader in quantum information processing that earned him a Fellowship from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society and the Royal Society of Canada. In 2010 he founded Universal Quantum Devices, a startup commercializing spinoffs of quantum information research, with colleagues Thomas Jennewein and Steve MacDonald.

Research Interests:

  • Understanding the impact of manipulating information using the laws of quantum mechanics
  • Development of methods to protect quantum information against noise through quantum control and quantum error correction for quantum computing and cryptography
  • Implementation of ideas and concepts of quantum information processing using nuclear magnetic resonance and develop scalable methods of control of quantum systems
  • Develop blueprints for quantum information processors such as linear optics quantum computing (LOQC)

Degrees:

  • PhD, D.A.M.T.P., University of Cambridge, 1988
  • Part III of Math. Tripos, D.A.M.T.P., University of Cambridge, 1984
  • BSc, Physics, Universite Laval, 1983

Awards & Honours:

  • Canada Research Chair in Quantum Information, renewal, 2009-present
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, 2008
  • Premier’s Discovery award in Natural Science and Engineering (including a $500 000 grant)
  • NSERC’s inaugural Top 50 Discoveries list for 2006.

Major Positions:

Title Location When
Director Institute for Quantum Computing, University of Waterloo 2002- Present
Associate Researcher
Perimeter Institute 2001- Present
Professor Department of Physics, University of Waterloo 2001-Present
Scientific Director Quantum Works 2006- Present