How to choose the best QKD network technology: three different satellite based scenarios compared

Manuel Erhard, Armin Hochrainer, Matthias Fink, Johannes Handsteiner, Thomas Herbst, Thomas Scheidl, Zoran Sodnik, Bruno Cugny, Nikos Karafolas
2021 International Conference on Space Optics — ICSO 2020  
Quantum cryptography promises unconditionally secure communication. Today, there exists a vast array of different QKD protocols that claim to offer security. However, looking in more detail, many subtleties lead to different security levels, or in the worst-case to no security at all. Here, we introduce the most crucial QKD security properties, ranging from different attack schemes to actual implementation security considerations. We present three different QKD use-cases with different network
more » ... opologies: one trusted-node-based scenario (BB84 decoy) and two trusted-node-free (entanglement-based BBM92 and twin-field QKD). Using our, in cooperation with the European Space Agency (ESA), in-house developed simulations package, we simulate all relevant performance parameters, including the expected finite secret-key-rate. Furthermore, we assess all simulated QKD protocols' applicability to satellite-based QKD networks and identify essential technologies. Interestingly, not the single-photon detection modules are the key drivers in terms of secure-key-rate performance, but the optical sending and receiving telescopes.
doi:10.1117/12.2599218 fatcat:oprqvzpdsbardohnt6optsuaaq