Quantum cryptography finally commercialized?

Tuesday, 16 September 2003, 1:23 PM EST

Start-up MagiQ Technologies, from Somerville, Massachusetts, has released the first commercial implementation of quantum cryptography, the much-heralded solution to the perfect encryption cipher. Theoretically, encryption ciphers created using quantum physics are unbreakable.

While MagiQ Technologies' product, Navajo, isn't itself a quantum device it uses one of the fundamental tenets of quantum theory: Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle, to create a Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) network. Werner Heisenberg first published his theory in 1927, stating that the more precisely the position of is known, the less precisely the momentum is known. This succinct statement addresses the uncertain relationship between the position and the momentum (mass times velocity) of a subatomic particle, such as an electron, and has profound impact on the development of future information systems.

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