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Why Quantum Mechanics?

Quantum Mechanics has laid the foundation for science and engineering in the 20th century.  The properties of semiconductors, superconductors, magnetic materials, and the periodic table, are all firmly rooted in quantum mechanics.  Our ability to understand the quantum nature of matter has led to the development of myriad inventions such as transistors, lasers, and MRI scanners, which have profoundly impacted humanity.  Now, in the 21st century, researchers are exerting control over quantum mechanics at a more fundamental level.  Quantum computers, once they are developed, will be able to perform calculations that no ordinary computer can perform.  Quantum key distribution uses essential notions of quantum entanglement to provide the basis for a future quantum internet.  Quantum sensors promise to push the limits of measurement sensitivity far beyond what is possible with today’s approaches.  The Schrodinger equation itself--arguably the most important equation in physics--can be solved efficiently using quantum hardware.