It has been a while since I wrote about quantum key distribution. Once a technology is commercially available, my interest starts to fade. But commercial availability in this case hasn’t meant widespread use. Quantum key distribution has ended up a niche market because creating shared keys with it for more than one connection using a single device is so difficult.
That may all change now with a very inventive solution that makes use of all the best things: lasers, nonlinear optics, and conservation of energy.
Quantum key distribution in less than 500 words
The goal of quantum key distribution is to generate a random number that is securely shared between two people, always termed Alice and Bob. The shared random number is then used to seed classical encryption algorithms.