Computer scientist Gilles Brassard is interested in all aspects of quantum information processing, which lies at the intersection of computer science and quantum mechanics.
His list of research achievements is extensive: quantum cryptography, quantum teleportation, quantum entanglement distillation, pseudo-telepathy, the classical simulation of quantum entanglement, loss-tolerant quantum coin flipping and key distribution schemes à la Merkle, capable of resisting the onslaught of a quantum eavesdropper. Some of these concepts are still theoretical, but others have been implemented in the laboratory and are even commercially available.
Together with his former postdoctoral fellow Christopher Fuchs, Brassard dreams of casting away the standard physics-oriented axioms of quantum mechanics, and replacing them with more intuitive axioms formulated in the light of quantum information theory. Together with his student Paul Raymond-Robichaud, he has established that quantum mechanics can have a purely local realistic interpretation, Bell’s Theorem notwithstanding. Brassard has received honorary doctorates from the University of Ottawa and the Università della Svizzera italiana in Lugano.
Wolf Prize for Physics, 2018
Officer, Order of Canada, 2014
Killam Prize for Natural Sciences, 2011
Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering, 2009
Rank Prize in Opto-Electronics, 2006
Fellow, Royal Societies of London and Canada, 1996