Quantum computing and quantum technology are rapidly growing fields with applications for many industries and businesses.
Tech companies are racing to create quantum technology and produce reliable and safe quantum machines.
So, they need educated engineers who are willing to put in the effort to achieve great things.
This guide will give you all the details necessary to decide if it is the perfect career for you.
Quantum engineering is worth it if you wish to design and develop new technology based on quantum theory, quantum engineering is a worthwhile career.
Along with compelling and fulfilling work, you can also take advantage of increasing job opportunities, a high salary, career advancement opportunities, and recognition for contributions to the emerging field.
However, as with most jobs, quantum engineering may not suit everyone.
Since quantum engineering is young, obtaining relevant knowledge and experience may be a complicated endeavor.
Rather than a predetermined education path and certifications like other engineering disciplines, you will need to determine your own proper education path.
Once you have obtained appropriate qualifications, you will likely encounter many job prospects.
Job prospects may align with the average of Computer and Information Research Scientists at 22% growth before 2030.
However, this number may become substantially higher as the quantum market should grow six times it’s current standing by 2030.
The higher growth rate showcases the need for quantum specialists, especially quantum engineers.
Quantum engineering is an excellent career for people with a passion for physics and technology.
There are also many career opportunities within quantum engineering, allowing individuals to choose a position they enjoy in an exciting industry.
Salary-wise, quantum engineers make an average of $99,000 annually, although it can reach $159,000 or higher depending on your specific employer and expertise.
If you make significant contributions or develop new technology, you may achieve bonuses or progress to advanced job positions.
Similar to most engineers, quantum engineers can also enjoy attractive benefits such as flexible schedules, paid time off, stock or investment options, healthcare insurance, and retirement plans.
Learn more: Is Quantum Computing Profitable?
Quantum engineers research, design, develop, test, optimize, and maintain or repair quantum computers and related applications.
Most quantum engineers will work on one aspect and a large team of researchers and scientists.
As quantum technology is in early development, there is a tremendous amount to learn about each element of quantum technology.
Quantum engineers can specialize in different areas, including the following:
- Quantum research scientist
- Quantum computer engineer
- Quantum hardware engineer
- Quantum software engineer
- Quantum electrical engineer
- Quantum machine learning engineer
- Quantum developer
They can also work in different industries, particularly medicine, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, finance, cybersecurity, aerospace and aviation, defense, transport, and artificial intelligence.
See more about Where Do Quantum Engineers Work.
If you find quantum physics and engineering interesting, you can become a quantum engineer.
When you graduate with a typical engineering degree and obtain the necessary certificates, you have an official engineering title.
Since there are only a few quantum engineering programs worldwide, it’s probably harder to achieve a certified “quantum engineer” title.
However, there are plenty of ways to reach your goal of becoming a quantum engineer.
Likewise, numerous tech companies are calling for quantum engineers. As quantum technology progresses, more companies and institutes will look for specific quantum engineer titles and positions.
Learn more: Is Quantum Computing Computer Science?
Only a few universities have created quantum engineering programs that present graduates with quantum engineering degrees. These institutions include:
- PSL University in France with a graduate program: Quantum Engineering in Physics
- UNSW in Australia with an undergraduate honors program: Quantum Engineering
- The University of Waterloo in Canada with a graduate program: Quantum Information
- Harvard University in the United States with a Ph.D. program: Quantum Science and Engineering
- Stevens Institute of Technology in the United States with a graduate program: Quantum Engineering
- Colorado School of Mines in the United States with a graduate program: Software and Hardware in Quantum Engineering
- The University of Chicago in the United States with a Ph.D. program: Quantum Science and Engineering
In other places, you will need to forge your own path to become a quantum engineer.
You can take relevant programs in quantum physics, electrical engineering, or computer engineering.
In your Masters or Ph.D., you can attend a university pursuing quantum engineering research.
The essential element of becoming a quantum engineer is having a solid foundation in quantum physics or electrical engineering.
You can pursue either physics or engineering during your bachelor’s degree, although you can ideally take a double-major. Students of mechanical engineering can study quantum mechanics, too.
During your undergraduate degree, take as many quantum mechanics courses as possible.
You may also be able to take courses with certificates online related to quantum mechanics, classical computing languages, and quantum computing languages.
These classes would be beneficial moving forward in your studies and career.
After you graduate with a Bachelor’s, pursue your Master’s degree at a university offering graduate quantum engineering programs or working on quantum engineering research.
If you choose the latter, contact potential research advisors before applying to the university.
While you do not need to obtain a Ph.D. in quantum engineering, it will increase your expertise and experience.
This way, you may be able to work at prestigious companies such as NASA or Google.
You may also contribute better to the quantum engineering field and preferred industry.
Depending on where you would like to work, there is a high chance you will also need a professional engineering license.
If you pursue quantum engineering, prepare for a complicated academic path.
However, in the end, your dedicated effort will be more than worth it.
You’ll work in an intriguing and exciting domain, participate in a growing and evolving field, and make extraordinary contributions to emerging technology.