Bengaluru: It is a milestone for DRDO in Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) technology as it has showcased secure communication between two labs using the Quantum technology-based security.

For any country, secure communications are vital for defence and strategic agencies in the world. Distribution of encryption keys from time to time is an important requirement in this context.

It is important to note that sharing of keys over the air or wired links requires encryption, which in turn requires encryption keys to be pre-shared. 

It is in this context that Quantum based communication plays a major role. It offers a robust solution to sharing the keys securely. DRDO undertook the project for development of this technology.

The technology was used between two DRDO labs, DRDL and RCI, to show secure communication. 

Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh congratulated the DRDO team for successful demonstration of QKD communication.

A popular website notes that the technology is developed by CAIR, Bengaluru and DYSL-QT, Mumbai. Quantum Communication using time-bin Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) scheme was performed under realistic conditions. The setup also demonstrated the validation of detection of a third party trying to gain knowledge of the communication. Quantum based security against eavesdropping was validated for the deployed system at over 12 km range and 10dB attenuation over fibre optic channel.
Continuous wave laser source was used to generate photons without depolarisation effect. The timing accuracy employed in the setup was of the order of picoseconds. The Single photon avalanche detector (SPAD) recorded arrival of photons and key rate was achieved in the range of kbps with low Quantum bit error rate.

Software was developed for data acquisition, time synchroniation, post-processing, determining Quantum bit error rate and extracting other important parameters.

The work being done at DRDO will be used to enable start-ups and SMEs in the domain of Quantum information technologies. It will also serve to define standards and crypto policies that can leverage QKD system in a unified Cipher Policy Committee (CPC) framework for more secure and pragmatic key management for current and future military cryptographic systems.