Gerald Gilbert, Ph.D.
Gerald Gilbert, a MITRE Fellow, is the principal investigator of MITRE’s Quantum Information Science Research Project.
A theoretical physicist and quantum information scientist, Gilbert joined MITRE in 1996 with the long-term aspiration of developing a quantum computer, a computer so powerful it can solve problems not otherwise possible to solve. Gilbert founded MITRE’s Quantum Information Science Program, established MITRE’s Princeton University site, and initiated the company’s first quantum laboratory there.
The Quantum Information Research Project, one of the largest research projects MITRE has ever taken on, is a partnership of leading physics research groups at MITRE, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Sandia Laboratories. As principal investigator, Gilbert leads the team that aims to build the world’s first fully scalable, universal photonic quantum computer distributed in a cloud comprised of a small quantum network. They are designing and building programmable nano-photonic quantum processors that will be the engines of a scalable universal quantum computer.
In addition to quantum information science, Gilbert has specialized in the study of string theory—an attempt to explain and provide a mathematically consistent formulation of all the fundamental forces of nature in a way that includes the general theory of relativity and quantum mechanics.
He earned his doctorate in theoretical physics under Nobel Laureate Professor Steven Weinberg at the University of Texas. After earning his Ph.D., Gilbert was awarded the Weingart Prize Research Fellowship in Theoretical Physics at the California Institute of Technology, after which he was awarded a University Research Fellowship at Cambridge University (studying and conducting research under Professor Stephen Hawking). He worked as a researcher at the University of Maryland at College Park.
Gilbert has served on the U.S. Defense Science Board and the U.S. Air Force Scientific Advisory Board as an expert on quantum information science and has participated in many expert scientific panels. He received the Best Student Prize and the Patrick M.S. Blackett Award, both from the NATO International School of Subnuclear Physics in Erice, Italy.
He is co-inventor on five U.S. patents in Quantum Information Science and is a sought-after speaker in the field. At MITRE he has received a number of awards, including the Program Innovation Award, the MITRE Best Paper Award, and three Director's Awards for Technical Excellence.