Feb. 13, 2023 — A study by Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers has demonstrated how satellites could enable more efficient, secure quantum networks.
Quantum key distribution can use quantum bits, or qubits, to distribute shared random keys for users to exchange encrypted information. Qubits can exist in more than one state simultaneously and carry more information than standard computing bits. Qudits, another quantum unit, can exist in more than two states and carry even more information.
Chapman’s team used light particles to create entangled pairs of qubits and qudits, meaning one particle from a pair couldn’t be described independently of the other. The team emulated transmission between a ground station and satellite and simulated transmission from orbiting satellites.
“We found qubits and qudits are both viable,” Chapman said.
About Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Oak Ridge National Laboratory delivers scientific discoveries and technical breakthroughs needed to realize solutions in energy and national security and provide economic benefit to the nation. The lab address national needs through impactful research and world-leading research centers. ORNL’s wide range of partnerships with other US Department of Energy laboratories and programs, universities, and industry allows the lab to pair its strengths with others for outstanding contributions to science.
UT-Battelle manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory for DOE’s Office of Science, the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States. DOE’s Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://energy.gov/science.
Source: Matt Lakin, ORNL