Information Reconciliation (IR) in QKD is a fundamental step in ensuring Alice and Bob share identical set of bits (reconciled key). IR could be done by one-way or two-way channel coding using an auxiliary public authenticated channel to send parities to correct the actual labels so that the sample labels at Alice and Bob match. We assume that communication is performed through an Optical Wireless (OW) or Free Space Optics (FSO) channel, which effects the received signal by a stochastic fading due to jitter in pointing. The effect is that the received samples do not match with the transmitted ones, this is the reason why IR is necessary in such a system. In a previous work, we analyzed the system performance over FSO channel, uncovering the dependence between performance and system parameters such as fading variance or the telescope gain. In this paper we want to study the overall performance and try to obtain optimal values for the parameters that influence the sign error probability.
Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) is a communication method which exchanges secret keys using cryptographic protocols involving elements from quantum science. Continuous Variable (CV) QKD is a method to implement key exchange using sampling of Gaussian signals. Reconciliation in CV-QKD is fundamentally realized via coding of the Alice or Bob binary labels of the Gaussian samples using either one-way or interactive communications between the parties, Alice and Bob, over a public authenticated channel. We assume that the communication is performed through an Optical Wireless (OW) or Free Space Optics (FSO) channel. In that case the received signal suffers from stochastic fading due to pointing jitter or atmospheric turbulence. As a result of the channel fading and noise Alice and Bob Gaussian samples will not match. Information Reconciliation (IR) is the phase of the CV-QKD protocol that makes sure that Alice and Bob agree on a common and identical labeling of their samples, i.e. agree on a common stream of bits that we denote as “reconciled key.” The information reconciliation in CV-QKD could be done by one-way or two-way channel coding to correct the actual labels so that they do match. To do so Bob generates a sequence of parity bits using a systematic code. These bits are sent to Alice over an authenticated public channel. Alice then uses her own sequence of labels she obtains after quantization with the redundancy provided by Bob to recover Bob’s binary sequence. In this work we analyze the problem of information reconciliation for continuous variable quantum key distribution over a free space optics channel.
This paper discusses the most relevant aspects of the practical implementation of a long-range Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) link with trusted nodes, achieving the highest possible secret key rate generation within the security and system level constraints. To this purpose, the implementation of an end-to-end QKD system will be discussed, including implementation aspects from physical transmission of photon states through a standard telecommunications grade optical fiber, to consideration of device imperfections, information reconciliation protocols. In addition, since there are circumstances when a fiber optical link may not be available, we will also discuss a test bench implementation of a Free Space Optics (FSO) QKD link.
Furthermore, in spite of the fact that Discrete Variable QKD (DV-QKD) systems have reached a maturity level that allows their potential full realization and implementation for creation of a secure network backbone for key distribution in nations, in realistic links DV-QKD is really limited by technology and physical constraints associated with construction of reliable high rate single photon (or at least low photon count) sources, and of fast and reliable single photon detectors with very low dark count rates. In these cases, the use of Continuous Variable QKD (CV-QKD) schemes may be advantageous. For this reason the paper also discusses the problem of information reconciliation in CVQKD scenarios, showing that in long distance links the sign of the received Gaussian samples contains the largest fraction of information, leading to the design of an Unequal Error Protection (UEP) reverse reconciliation scheme.