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Quantum Internet Proposed Research Group

The information below is for an older proposed charter
Document Proposed charter Quantum Internet Proposed Research Group RG (qirg) Snapshot
Title Quantum Internet Proposed Research Group
Last updated 2018-11-14
State Start Chartering/Rechartering (Internal Steering Group/IAB Review) Rechartering
RG State Active
Send notices to (None)

Draft Charter (discussed at IETF 103)

A Quantum Internet, if developed and deployed, will bring new
communication and remote computation capabilities, as well as
improving the accuracy of physical sensor systems (e.g., for
interferometry for long-baseline telescopes).  One key area will be
cryptographic functions including quantum key distribution and quantum
byzantine agreement.

Work toward a Quantum Internet is well underway in physics
laboratories and in theory groups. The next step is network
engineering.  Some of the problems that need to be addressed include:

* routing: there are a number of proposals, including a couple in the
  last six months or so, and which routing schemes are appropriate for
  which circumstances needs to be assessed
* resource allocation: some of the routing proposals seem to be
  including a notion of the dynamic traffic on the network, but this
  distinction needs to be defined clearly
* connection establishment: what does a request look like (semantics
  more than syntax) as it propagates across the network?
* interoperability: given than different networks are currently being
  designed and built, how do we ensure a long-lived internetwork
* security: are quantum repeater networks inherently more or less
  vulnerable in operations than classical networks?
* design of an API that will serve the role that sockets play in
  classical networks

There are also other problems:

* applications for a Quantum Internet: by far the most important on
  the agenda for the community (not necessarily a QIRG work item) is
  figuring out what we would *do* with a Quantum Internet, including
  what data rates and fidelities are required
  (otherwise, there is no market for a QI)
* multi-party states and multi-party transfers such as network coding:
  rather than simple, independent point-to-point transfers, how can we
  create and use more complex states?

Outputs and Milestones

Two concrete work items that QIRG may produce:

* An architectural framework delineating network node roles and
  definitions, to build a common vocabulary and serve as the first
  step toward a quantum network architecture.
* Wehner, Elkhouss and Hanson have created a roadmap of technical
  capability milestones for quantum networks.  Mapping these
  milestones to concrete use cases will help to determine the order
  and timing of classical protocols that will be needed.

Additionally, QIRG may serve as technical consultants to cryptography
groups within IETF and IRTF on the capabilities and timing for both
quantum computation and quantum networking, to provide guidance on
development and deployment of IETF protocols.

Finally, QIRG will serve as a coordination point with other standards
organizations that are working on standardization of quantum


QIRG will hold 2-3 meetings per year, typically one at IETF, one at a
related conference, and one online.

Membership Policy