Free-space quantum cryptography in daylight

Richard J. Hughes, William T. Buttler, Paul G. Kwiat, Steve K. Lamoreaux, George L. Morgan, Jane E. Nordholt, C. Glen Peterson

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

Abstract

Quantum cryptography is an emerging technology in which two parties may simultaneously generate shared, secret cryptographic key material using the transmission of quantum states of light. The security of these transmissions is based on the inviolability of the laws of quantum mechanics and information-theoretically secure post-processing methods. An adversary can neither successfully tap the quantum transmissions, nor evade detection, owing to Heisenberg's uncertainty principle. In this paper we describe the theory of quantum cryptography, and the most recent results from our experimental free-space system with which we have demonstrated for the first time the feasibility of quantum key generation over a point-to-point outdoor atmospheric path in daylight. We achieved a transmission distance of 0.5 km, which was limited only by the length of the test range. Our results provide strong evidence that cryptographic key material could be generated on demand between a ground station and a satellite (or between two satellites), allowing a satellite to be securely re-keyed on orbit. We present a feasibility analysis of surface-to-satellite quantum key generation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-126
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Volume3932
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000
Externally publishedYes
EventFree-Space Laser Communication Technologies XII - San Jose, CA, USA
Duration: Jan 24 2000Jan 24 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Free-space quantum cryptography in daylight'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Hughes, R. J., Buttler, W. T., Kwiat, P. G., Lamoreaux, S. K., Morgan, G. L., Nordholt, J. E., & Peterson, C. G. (2000). Free-space quantum cryptography in daylight. Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering, 3932, 117-126.