Research activities in Experimental Quantum Communication

Quantum Communications from a satellite: First demonstration of the faithful transmission of generic qubits along a satellite link. We reported for the first time the successful realization of QC encoded in the polarization of single photons from several satellites. Qubit pulses are sent at 100 Mhz repetition rate from ground to Space and are reflected back from selected satellites equipped with corner-cube-retroreflectors able to preserve the input polarization. Due to uplink attenuations, the pulses reflected from the satellites have an average photon number close to one. Nanosecond synchronization was performed by exploiting the bright MLRO 10 Hz pulses, usually devoted to satellite-laser-ranging. Qubit-error-rate (QBER) was found to be at the level of a few percents. This result paves the way to the development of quantum protocols along Space channels. (To appear in PRL, vol 114- 2015)

Q-Space Experiment: First Demonstration of single-photon link between a satellite and the Earth, reported on March 28th, 2008, in New Journal of Physics IOP select paper - Headline on Physics World (20 March 2008), news on New Scientist (31 March 2008), on COSMOS magazine, Australia (3 April 2008), on (19 May 2008), on Laser Focus World (30 May 2008) and selected for the Press Release at the CLEO Conference San Jose (23 April 2008). -

Principal Investigator of Agenzia Spaziale Italiana - ASI SpaceQ project, to study a dedicate satellite for quantum communication in Space.

Principal Investigator of University of Padova Strategic Project QuantumFuture, which focuses its objectives on the communication at the quantum limit.

Coordinator of Padova Unit of European Space Agency Project: Optical Quantum Links for GNSS.