New research from the University of York supports the development of scalable and secure high-rate quantum networks. Scientists from York's Center of Quantum Technology have compared the state of the art in continuous variable systems with the standard discrete variable systems. "If you want to build a metropolitan network based on quantum cryptography, you need a high-rate, super-fast connection, otherwise you can't compete with the classical communication infrastructure," says York computer scientist Stefano Pirandola.
The researchers report the use of cryogenic devices and standard Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) is unlikely to approach the high rates achieved both theoretically and experimentally using a continuous variable quantum system. The problem with QKD protocols based on simple quantum systems is their low key-rate, which makes them unsuitable for adaptation for use in metropolitan networks. On the other hand, continuous variable systems allow the parallel transmission of many qubits of information while retaining the quantum capability of detecting and defeating eavesdroppers.
The researchers say continuous variable systems offer the best and least expensive technology and can work at room temperature.
From University of York
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