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Quantum Networks: Using Entanglement to Create Unhackable Communication

By Dick Weisinger

Quantum Computing is not just about building lightening-fast qubit-based computer processors, it includes the transmission of qubit information between other quantum processors and across quantum networks.

Quantum networking is facilitated by a phenomenon called entanglement. Entanglement occurs when the state of particular particles in a group cannot be described independently without also considering the state of the other particles of the group. Entanglement is unique to quantum computing and does not occur in classical physics.

Xie Chen, associate professor of theoretical physics at Caltech, said that “when particles are entangled, it’s as if they are born that way, like twins. Even though they might be separated right after birth, [they’ll] still look the same. And they grow up having a lot of personality traits that are similar to each other.”

Spyridon Michalakis, physicist at Caltech, said that “the particles act together like a single object whose identity lies not with the individual components but in a higher plane. It becomes something larger than itself. Entanglement is like a thread that goes through every single one of the individual particles, telling them how to be connected to one another.”

Entanglement facilitates encryption because permissions to other users can only be allowed when when the users share entangled particles. Albert Einstein called it “spooky action at a distance.”

Matteo Pompili, PhD student, said that “a quantum internet will open up a range of novel applications, from unhackable communication and cloud computing with complete user privacy to high-precision time-keeping. And like with the Internet 40 years ago, there are probably many applications we cannot foresee right now.”

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