Quantum Shorts Competition

16 December 2019 - 29 February 2020

Short Story Collection to Entangle Readers in the Quantum World

Are you ready to get entangled in the science of the very small? That’s the theme of Quantum Shorts, a short story competition inspired by quantum physics.

Quantum Shorts is a project by the Centre for Quantum Technologies (CQT) at the National University of Singapore. Alternating between short films and flash fiction inspired by quantum physics since 2012, the Quantum Shorts competition is now in its eighth year.

Quantum physics is the counter-intuitive science of the particles of light and matter. For scientists, it’s best described in the language of mathematics and can be usefully designed into devices for computing, communication and sensing.  

In the hands of writers, quantum physics has inspired stories that are whimsical and thought-provoking, ranging from bold futuristic imaginings to contemplations about the everyday. In previous years entries there have been stories of lovers beginning their lives together, families facing crises, superheroes fighting their nemeses, and – of course – cats.

Quantum concepts including entanglement and superposition, and technologies such as quantum computing have been woven into the stories – sometimes in hard sci-fi style, other times almost imperceptibly.

Invention and imagination have made it an exciting time for quantum physics. Progress in quantum computing is claiming headlines and the plotlines of Marvel’s Avengers movies has eased quantum physics into the public consciousness. For those who have always wanted to dip a toe into the quantum world, Quantum Shorts is an invitation to dive in deeper.

The deadline for entries is 29 February 2020. Scientific American, the longest continuously published magazine in the US, and Nature, the international weekly journal of science, are media partners. Joining as a new scientific partner for in New Zealand is the Dodd-Walls Centre for Photonic and Quantum Technologies based here in Dunedin.

There is a top prize of US$1500, a runner up prize of US$1000, and ten shortlisted stories will receive US$100 each. More details of all the competition’s partners, guidelines to enter and a full set of rules are available at shorts.quantumlah.org.


For more information

Craig Grant

Otago Museum Director of Visitor Experience and Science Engagement


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