Telefónica, Huawei Perform Field Trial Applying Quantum Cryptography on Commercial Optical Networks

Telefónica, Huawei Perform Field Trial Applying Quantum Cryptography on Commercial Optical Networks Image Credit: vska/

Telefónica, Huawei and UPM have performed a field trial, demonstrating the application of quantum cryptography on commercial optical networks.

The field trial relies on a novel “Continuous Variables” (CV) QKD(Quantum Key Distribution) technology. A particular feature of the tested devices is that they are flexible, software-controlled ones. The systems are optimally adapted to a seamless integration in the dynamical environment of SDN and NFV networks, where the creation and modification of the optical fiber paths and required encryption, follows commands received over software-based control interfaces. 

The field trial employs the optical infrastructure provided by Telefónica Spain, connecting three different sites within the Madrid metropolitan area where software-controlled CV-QKD devices, developed by the Huawei Research Lab in Munich in collaboration with UPM are installed, together with SDN-based management modules developed by Telefónica’s.

This technique, known as QKD, not only provides protection against the threat posed by quantum computation to current cryptographic algorithms, but it can also provide a much higher security level for any exchange of data. However, QKD requires a high-quality optical fiber physical infrastructure, and Telefónica is very well positioned to provide services based on this technology, said Telefonica.

Diego R. Lopez, Head of Technology Exploration & Standards, Telefonica's Global CTIO Unit
We have been working to develop a field trial that demonstrates the provision of secure communication services based on QKD (Quantum Key Distribution) using a commercial SDN-managed optical network infrastructure.

Maria Antonia Crespo, Director of Transport and IP Connectivity, Telefonica Spain
Telefónica Spain’s optical network, in combination with our high-capacity photonic transmission systems, offer the required performance to provide secure channels based on quantum communication. This enhanced security is a key enabler for next generation networks, flexible, virtualized and software-defined.

Ray is a news editor at The Fast Mode, bringing with him more than 10 years of experience in the wireless industry.

For tips and feedback, email Ray at ray.sharma(at), or reach him on LinkedIn @raysharma10, Facebook @1RaySharma


BT and Partners Build Quantum-secured High Speed Fibre Network


Telco Systems to Co-Develop uCPE and NFV Edge Solutions based on Arm Architecture



Artelligence 2019

Network Virtualization and SDN Asia

Network Virtualization & SDN Americas

Mobile 360 Digital Societies 2019

TADSummit 2019

MWC Los Angeles 2019

The Digitrans Forum 2019

Mobile 360 Eurasia 2019