Ph.D. Defense: Omar Amer
July 21 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm EDT
Title: Towards Practical Quantum Key Distribution
Ph.D. Candidate: Omar Amer
Major Advisor: Dr. Walter O. Krawe
Associate Advisors: Dr. Bing Wang, Dr. Benjamin Fuller
Date/Time: Thursday, July 21st, 2022, 1:00 pm
Location: Homer Babbidge Library 1102 Room/WebEx
Thursday, Jul 21, 2022 1:00 pm | 1 hour | (UTC-04:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada)
Meeting number: 2621 036 8627
Quantum information theory threatens upheavals in a number of computational fields in the coming decades. Foremost among them, a number of standard cryptographic assumptions used in public key cryptography are known to be broken by Shor’s algorithm. One option for their replacement are quantum key distribution (QKD) protocols, which allow two spatially removed parties, Alice and Bob, to establish information theoretic secure secret keys using an authenticated, public, classical communication channel and an untrusted quantum channel. In the four decades since BB84, the original QKD protocol, was discovered, QKD protocols have undergone much theoretical and experimental development — recently even seeing commercial implementations and large-scale tests.
In this dissertation we further develop the theory behind QKD and apply towards three main goals: (i) to reduce the complexity of QKD protocols, investigating what can be achieved when parties have limited quantum capabilities and by relaxing assumptions that are regularly made when conducting security analysis as well as by the development and analysis of novel protocols and proof techniques; (ii) to broaden the accessibility of QKD technology and research by developing useful open-source software for modeling quantum networks, conducting QKD with real hardware, and for modeling arbitrary protocols; and finally, (iii) to improve the scalability of the technology, by developing and analyzing a model and the necessary algorithms for the implementation of quantum key distribution networks. We will give an updated summary of the work completed towards those goals, with a focus on the completion of our study into quantum key distribution networks, methods for intelligently routing entanglement and key-material in them, and the performance of our algorithms in various network topologies.
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