A prototype of a quantum network using drones was created

Physicists and engineers have worked over the past few years to create a usable quantum

networks.This would require sending entangled particles between users. The result would be the most secure network ever created. As part of the creation of a quantum network, the researchers sent entangled particles through fiber cables, between towers and even from satellites to Earth. What makes the new experiment special is the addition of new elements to the system - drones.

Ideally the ideal solution for creatingThe long-range quantum network is satellites. But for small networks, for example, for communication between users in the same city, another option is needed. Towers can be used, but they are susceptible to weather conditions, and their operation can also be blocked - intentionally or not. To get around this problem, the researchers used drones to transmit signals.

The work involved creating a small device,generating a laser, and attaching it to one of the drones. When he fired, the photons split into two, forming entangled pairs. One group of paired photons was aimed at the second drone, and the other at the ground station. The drone that received the entangled photon only served as a repeater - after refocusing, the photon was sent to a third drone, which then sent it to a second ground station.

In the prototype, photons were sent only 1 km, butthe researchers suggest that moving the drones higher will allow photons to be transmitted over a distance of up to 300 km. This work is the first in which entangled particles are sent between two moving devices.

Photo: X.-H. Tian, ​​H.-Y. Liu and Z. Xie / Nanjing Univ.

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