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Journal Article

#### Single-photon quantum key distribution in the presence of loss

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##### Citation

Curty, M., & Moroder, T. (2007). Single-photon quantum key distribution in the
presence of loss.* PHYSICAL REVIEW A,* *75*(5): 052336.
doi:10.1103/PhysRevA.75.052336.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-6D3C-A

##### Abstract

We investigate two-way and one-way single-photon quantum key distribution (QKD) protocols in the presence of loss introduced by the quantum channel. Our analysis is based on a simple precondition for secure QKD in each case. In particular, the legitimate users need to prove that there exists no separable state (in the case of two-way QKD), or that there exists no quantum state having a symmetric extension (one-way QKD), that is compatible with the available measurements results. We show that both criteria can be formulated as a convex optimization problem known as a semidefinite program, which can be efficiently solved. Moreover, we prove that the solution to the dual optimization corresponds to the evaluation of an optimal witness operator that belongs to the minimal verification set of them for the given two-way (or one-way) QKD protocol. A positive expectation value of this optimal witness operator states that no secret key can be distilled from the available measurements results. We apply such analysis to several well-known single-photon QKD protocols under losses.