Quantum Key Distribution Link

A joint team of scientists from IIT Delhi and Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), successfully demonstrated Quantum Key Distribution Link, for the first time in India.

Key Facts

  • Quantum Key Distribution link will be created between Prayagraj and Vindhyachal in Uttar Pradesh, for a distance of around 100 km.
  • Quantum key distribution is a secure communication method, that implements a cryptographic protocol comprising of components of quantum mechanics.
  • It enables two parties for producing a shared random secret key that is known only to them. The secret key can be used to encrypt and decrypt messages.

How was this feat achieved?

The technological feat was achieved over a commercial grade optical fibre, that are already available in field. With this, India demonstrated indigenous technology of secure key transfer to bootstrap military grade communication security key hierarchy.  Performance parameters have been measured and have been found to be within reported international standards of up to 10 KHz.

Significance of the technology

This technology will enable security agencies with planning a suitable quantum communication network, with a backbone of indigenous technology.

What is Quantum key distribution (QKD)?

Quantum key distribution is a secure communication method, that implements a cryptographic protocol comprising of components of quantum mechanics. It enables two parties in producing a shared random secret key known only to them.  It is often incorrectly called quantum cryptography, because it is best-known example of a quantum cryptographic task. Quantum key distribution is used only to produce and distribute a key, but not transmit any message data. This key can be used with any chosen encryption algorithm for encrypting and decrypting a message. This message can then be transmitted through standard communication channel.

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