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The selection of quantum states is used to create key protocols for secure data transfer. Quantum encryption is thus not based on mathematical assumptions, but on physical laws. Quantum states are very fragile, however, and precise measurement is complicated, so transfer (within individual chips or across great distances) entails significant technical challenges.

Helmholtz is currently focusing on quantum communication systems in aerospace applications and researching fundamental questions of quantum encryption. The goal is to make worldwide quantum cryptographic connections possible in the future. The vision is a quantum communication network – a quantum Internet – in which terrestrial and space-based systems are interconnected via quantum repeaters, allowing unprecedented communication security.

Quantum technology for secure communication

How can data be transferred securely? This is a question that is becoming increasingly urgent in today's digital world for public authorities and companies, especially in the context of Industry 4.0, and also for private individuals. Solutions are needed that can also meet the security requirements of coming years and decades. Quantum encryption stands out in particular. It makes it possible to trace the security of data transmission back to the validity of fundamental laws of quantum physics.

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BMBF and research launch major offensive for secure quantum communication

The German government plans to massively increase its support in the field of optical quantum communication in the coming years. At a press conference in Berlin's Fraunhofer Forum on May 17, 2019, Federal Research Minister Anja Karliczek announced the official launch of the new major QuNET initiative. In the future, intensive research will be conducted here on photonic technologies for tap-proof quantum-based communication networks. 

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