The Confines Of Quantum Communications

When you search for a website you computer has to make sense of what you have typed in. For instance you may type in “google.” Your computer will then contact a local Domain Name System (DNS) server and ask it what “google” means. The DNS server will either contain the knowledge that the word “google” translates to a specific set of numbers that it will send back or it will act as a client for another DNS server which will perform the same process. Eventually your computer will get back the numerical domain name akin to the one you asked for. If someone was to crack (maliciously hack) into the DNS server they could tell it to send back the domain for their own fake website when receiving the legitimate websites name; as a result the DNS servers have to be secure and as quick as possible in their tasks.

It is in this kind of system in which quantum computing can be very useful. When a request for communication is established over a quantum internet both quantum key bits and quantum entangled bits which I have mentioned before are sent. The quantum keys are based on the idea that any unauthorised attempt to measure the nature of quantum particles will change the particles themselves and the make the intrusion obvious, a concept based on Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle. the quantum entangled bits would immediately change if the other did and so communication over the maximum entangled distance, which is currently about one hundred kilometres, would be instantaneous. Two computers communicating in this way would be the most basic form of the quantum internet which we could possibly see in the future. But there is however a fundamental cap the performance of such a system due to photon loss in the optical fibres and the quantum nature of the bits. This limit is something that can not be solved but rather has to be worked in order to create a working quantum communication system.

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