As quantum computing threatens to make today’s encryption obsolete, SpeQtral aims to develop the next generation of secure communication networks
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Spotted: Singapore-based SpeQtral is developing quantum networks in space to allow the global delivery of secure encryption keys. Its researchers have made progress on space-based quantum communications and are now focusing on developing commercial applications from their research.
Quantum encryption works by use of a system called quantum key distribution (QKD). In QKD, encryption takes place using single photons that are randomly polarised to states that represent ones and zeroes. The polarisation states are then used as the keys in cryptographic communications.
SpeQtral has already performed a successful on-orbit demonstration of a quantum light source on a cubesat (a very small, cube-shaped satellite). Formerly known as S15 Space Systems, it recently raised $1.9 million in a seed-funding round under its new name, led by space investor Space Capital. The funding round, which was oversubscribed, will be used to develop a space-to-ground cubesat that can demonstrate quantum communications.