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12 May 2006Quantum cryptography at 830nm in standard telecommunications fiber
Quantum cryptography systems can operate over relatively long distances in standard telecommunications fiber by
taking advantage of the low transmission losses in these fibers at 1.3 or 1.5 microns. Although there has been much
progress toward the development of highly efficient and low-noise detectors for these wavelengths, silicon avalanche
photodiodes currently offer superior single photon counting performance, but only at visible and near IR wavelengths
where the fiber transmission is poor. For ranges typical of local area networks, it is possible that a quantum key
distribution (QKD) system operating below 850nm could be optimal, even though standard telecommunications fiber
supports multiple optical modes at these wavelengths. We have recently developed an optical mode filter that allows
efficient higher order mode rejection from standard telecommunications fiber near 830nm. We have used this type of
filter to launch and recover QKD signals from a polarization-based system implementing the BB84 quantum
cryptography protocol. Here we present results from testing and operation in installed fiber links ranging up to 3km.
These results demonstrate that the filters can attenuate the higher order modes over 35dB while having a minimal
(<1dB) impact on the fundamental mode carrying the QKD signal.
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Bryan Jacobs, Scott Hendrickson, Michael Dennis, James Franson, "Quantum cryptography at 830nm in standard telecommunications fiber," Proc. SPIE 6244, Quantum Information and Computation IV, 62440H (12 May 2006); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.665872