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Senators Hassan and Thune’s Measure to Spur America’s Technology Innovation Included in Annual Defense Bill

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that includes a measure authored by Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and John Thune (R-SD) to encourage quantum research efforts that are critical to national security and economic growth.


“The Chinese military is working hard to close the technology gap between our two countries, and we can’t let that happen,” Senator Hassan said. “Quantum science is the foundation for several innovative security technologies, including state-of-the-art encryption and improved GPS. I am glad that the national defense bill includes a provision from my bill with Senator Thune to strengthen our quantum research and increase training in this field.”


“As the United States continues to make advancements in quantum information science, the ability to process information becomes increasingly faster and more efficient,” said Senator Thune. “This provision will play an important role in ensuring that the United States is equipped for current and future defense and security challenges.”


The Hassan-Thune measure included in the annual defense bill would improve workforce development in quantum-related fields by adding quantum information sciences to a list of programs included in the Department of Defense’s grant program that aims to increase STEM training and education for Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) students.


Senator Hassan is working across the aisle to help ensure that America’s workforce is prepared to compete in the 21st century innovation economy. Earlier this year, Senators Hassan and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) introduced bipartisan legislation to modernize math curriculum and improve K-12 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education in the United States. The Senate also passed a bipartisan package to help strengthen national security and outcompete China that included a version of a bill that Senator Hassan introduced with Senator Todd Young (R-IN) to help more students earn college credits while still in high school.