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CiViQ - Continuous Variable Quantum Communications


The vision of CiViQ is to develop quantum-enhanced physical layer security services that can be combined with modern cryptographic techniques, to enable unparalleled applications and services.

The project

The goal of the CiViQ project is to open a radically novel avenue towards flexible and cost-effective integration of quantum communication technologies, and in particular Continuous-Variable QKD, into emerging optical telecommunication networks. CiViQ aims at a broad technological impact based on a systematic analysis of telecom-defined user-requirements. To this end CiViQ unites for the first time a broad interdisciplinary community of 21 partners with a unique breadth of experience, involving major telecoms, integrators, and developers of QKD. The work targets advancing both the QKD technology itself and the emerging “software network” approach to lay the foundations of future seamless integration of both. The technological advantage will more specifically aim to:

  • Design architectures and implement protocol extensions of flexible “software-based” networks for midterm country-wide
    QKD reach.
  • Drive CV-QKD systems and components up to TRL 6, derive a standardized set of interfaces, also allowing a network-aware
    software-defined functionality and open modular development, and pursue cost reduction by seamless integration of off-the-shelf.
  • Push CV-QKD performance boundary forward by developing high-performance photonic integrated circuits (PIC) for CVQKD,
    i.e. opening the way for ultra-low-cost systems, and improve further the CV-QKD hallmark coexistence capability with
    standard WDM channels, i.e. reducing dramatically the barriers to optical network co-integration.
  • Prepare actively for next-generation networks by developing core enabling technologies and protocols aiming at a quantum
    communication over global distances with minimal trust assumptions.

CiViQ will culminate in the validation in true telecom network environment. Project-specific network integration and software development work will empower QKD to be used as a physical-layer-anchor securing critical infrastructures, with a demonstration in QKD-extended software-defined networks.


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No820466.