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The day we met the 2018 Australian of the Year - a reflection by Alexander Rowe, Year 10, St Peters College

Posted on December 05 2018

 

On 26 November 2018 the staff and students of St. Peter’s College, Adelaide, were honoured to have Professor Michelle Simmons lecture the Year 10 students on quantum computing, a part of the Science course embedded in our Year 10 curriculum. Here are the thoughts of one Year 10 boy on the presentation:

"Michelle Simmons recently presented to the St Peter’s students on quantum computing and its effect on society. This fascinating lecture focused mainly on the cutting-edge research that Professor Simmons is currently conducting, using a singular atom embedded in silicon to create the world’s smallest, completely accurate, quantum cubit.

The boys were presented with a glimpse into the future as Moore’s Law was applied to the quantum field, with the number of transistors on a standard integrated circuit doubling every two years and how this would completely change the supercomputer industry. Traditional computing challenges and problems that increase exponentially in difficulty can take longer to compute on regular computers, and quickly become impossible to complete within the life of the universe. With a quantum computer, Professor Simmons was quick to inform us, these problems can be solved within minutes.

Professor Simmons’ lecture inspired the boys to pursue a career in Physics, exposing us to how Physics will change the world. It was truly eye-opening and presented a different world of Physics – a highly competitive, ever changing race to innovate, funded and spurred on by huge multinational companies investing hundreds of millions of dollars. A world where a multimillion-dollar machine can be designed and built, with a slight chance of working, but huge potential and installed into custom built laboratories. Professor Michelle Simmons’ lecture provided insights and revelations into the future of Physics and our world". 
- Alexander Rowe, Year 10, St Peters

The lecture had real impact on the on the boys and has led to many discussions around the School, both in and out of classrooms. We would like to thank Professor Simmons, for coming to the School to deliver such an inspirational, polished lecture, and our Headmaster, Mr Tim Browning, for inviting Professor Simmons to the School.

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