Our mission is to offer secure communications based on quantum technology.
The Need for a New Secure Network
With the advent of quantum computing, conventional encryption methods will soon be easily cracked. To ensure secure communications in the future, a new architecture is required that utilizes Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) to ensure the safe delivery of encryption keys. The bits of these keys are encoded in the quantum properties of light in a manner such that any eavesdropping on the quantum channel can be detected. This means that keys established using QKD protocols are provably secure, and can be efficiently delivered via satellite to secure ground stations.
At the heart of the security of QKD lies the quantum light source that encodes information in the quantum properties of light. S15 Space Systems has developed a space-qualified quantum light source based on heritage developed at the Centre for Quantum Technologies in Singapore. A correlated photon pair source has already successfully operated in space, and an entangled photon pair source is scheduled for launch in 2018. Based on this heritage, S15 Space can quickly and cost-effectively deploy state-of-the-art QKD systems based on mature technologies.
QKD in a Nutshell
How is quantum communications more secure than regular communications?
A ‘quantum channel’ provides the two communicating users (Alice and Bob) a means to establish shared random numbers with the ability to confirm the absence of eavesdroppers on the channel. These numbers are used to create completely private symmetric encryption keys. Symmetric encryption keys are secure against all forms of computational attacks, including from quantum computers, and are used to encrypt sensitive data that is then sent over conventional data channels.
How does Eve get detected?
There are two unique properties of quantum physics that can be exploited. In the Prepare and Measure protocol, the no-cloning theorem of quantum mechanics ensures that an unknown quantum state cannot be measured (or cloned) without altering that state. In the Entanglement based protocol, states of separate photons are linked together in a combined quantum state so that measurement on one photon disturbs the overall entangled state.
What is the market for quantum-safe communications?
Any group that needs secure communications, including: Banks and financial institutions; Government and Defense agencies; Embassies; Satellite operators; Telecommunication operators; Cybersecurity and quantum computing developers. S15 Space has prepared a White Paper outlining the market and use case for quantum-safe technologies, which can be requested by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s the difference between QKD and quantum-safe communications?
QKD is the secure distribution of symmetric encryption keys, and is one application that can allow for quantum-safe communications (defined as communications that is immune to the encryption cracking capability of quantum computers).
Are there other quantum-safe communication options?
Yes, any securely delivered symmetric encryption scheme is likely to be quantum-safe; for example, a USB flash drive physically delivered by a trusted courier. There is also work underway to develop post-quantum cryptography (PQC), with the goal of creating new asymmetric (public-private key) algorithms that cannot be solved by quantum computers. However, PQC standards are still immature, and are not considered future-proof and tamper-proof like QKD.
Why migrate over to QKD when Quantum Computer development is many years away?
If data encrypted with a public RSA key is intercepted today, along with the public key, then that information can be stored and later cracked using Shor’s algorithm as soon as sufficiently powerful quantum computers are available. Estimates range from five to fifteen years from now, as the advancement of new technology, new algorithms and secretly-held developments are hard to predict.
How large is S15 Space Systems?
Incorporated in Singapore in late 2017, S15 Space is in the seed funding stage with six employees, with plans to expand significantly through 2018.
What IP or patents does S15 Space have?
S15 Space has access to relevant patents and IPs developed at CQT, with plans to file more patents in the near future.
What is the core technology developed by S15 Space?
S15 Space is commercializing discrete variable QKD, both weak-coherent-pulse-based (prepare and measure), and entanglement-based, leveraging heritage from CQT.
What is the timeline for developments?
S15 Space Systems is developing increasingly secure encryption hardware devices on a cadence of 18-24 months, with plans to launch demonstration missions in 2019 and 2020.