Tele 9757

Quantum Communications*

Term 1, 2019

Lecturer A/Prof R Malaney


*NEW - QUANTUM COMMUNICATIONS (ADVANCED) - There will be an advanced version of this Masters course in Term 3 – a pre-requisite will be a good mark (70 or above) in Tele9757 – details at end of this course.


PhD Scholarship Available (Australian Citizens Only): I have an open position for a PhD Scholarship with a stipend of $40,000 per year in Quantum Communications via Satellites. If you are an Australian Citizen interested in pursuing a PhD in quantum communications please discuss this with me in class. I will discuss PhD opportunities for international applicants at end of the course.



19/02/2019: Class Starts.


Instructions for Assignments 2019

Template for Assignments



Course Handout Here



Lecture material and assignment material available from download link below

Download Link  (password provided at first class – or see moodle page for course)

This course does not assume any knowledge of standard communication networks or quantum physics. The required material will form the early part of the course. However, trained communication specialists will find some material familiar as will trained physicists. The course focuses on the emerging new world where communication and quantum physics meet. Quantum Communications will become main-stream over the next 20 years. Commercial deployments of ultra-secure networks based on quantum cryptography have already commenced. Breakthroughs in the use of quantum physics to enhance communications are emerging at a rapid pace. Quantum networks will also form the communication links between future distributed quantum computers. Quantum networks are very much in the news and the links at the bottom of this page provide some further background material.


UNSW Handbook Entry

This course is aimed at Graduate Engineers and Physicists wishing to understand the exciting new world of Quantum Communications. Quantum Communications and Quantum Networks are anticipated to be the core networking technologies of the 21st century. In fact these communication systems have already appeared in the commercial world in many variations. This course introduces the keys concepts important for understanding, testing, analyzing and improving the performance of quantum communication networks. It will have particular focus on actual quantum networks currently being deployed and the use of such networks for secure information transfer. Designed from an engineering perspective the course will first introduce the basic quantum physics that underlies quantum communication principles. It will then introduce and explore the key concepts that drive quantum communications such as Quantum Entanglement, Quantum Teleportation, The No Cloning Theorem, Quantum Cryptography; Privacy Amplification and Error Correction for Quantum Keys.



  1. Introductory Lecture.  Who wants to be a “Quantum Engineer”? Why study Quantum Communications and Quantum networks? What’s wrong with classical networks? What classical communication and networking issues will we cover? What Quantum physics will we cover in the course?
  2. Overview of Commercial Quantum Networks. The future is now. What “real engineers” are now building. Overview of current Quantum networks  both deployed commercially and those currently in prototype
  3. Photon Polarization. Maxwell’s equations revisited. Applications of polarization in Quantum Networks.
  4. General Quantum Variables and Qubits. Applications of quantum variables in Quantum Networks
  5. Composite Quantum Systems. Applications of quantum systems in Quantum Networks.
  6. Quantum Entanglement. Why Einstein was wrong and right at same time. Why is entanglement important for Quantum Communications.
  7. Quantum Communications. Superdense coding. Breaking the classical information barrier.
  8. Experimental Quantum Teleportation of Qubits. Engineering  sources of Entangled Photons. Why is this hard? What is state-of-the art. What does future predict?
  9. The No Cloning Theorem. Copying classical information is easy, but try copying quantum information.
  10. Quantum Teleportation. An application of composite qubits and entanglement
  11. Review of Classical Cryptography. RSA  Algorithms and why classical encryption is defeated by  Quantum Computers
  12. Quantum Cryptography. The Bennett-Brassard Protocol for Quantum key distribution.
  13. Quantum Cryptography. Eckert’s Protocol for Quantum key distribution using entanglement.
  14. Quantum Cryptography. What do we actually mean be “secure” – a quantitative definition based on probability of deciphering.
  15. Review of Classical Error Correcting Codes. Hamming distance, Linear Codes, Generator Matrices, and all that jazz.
  16. Error Corrections for Quantum Keys. Error correcting codes once quantum physics is thrown in
  17. Privacy Amplification. Why error correction leaks information to a potential adversary and how to combat this with privacy amplification.
  18.  Continuous Variables
  19. Advanced Quantum Error Correction (optional).

Text(s) and Reference(s):

Class Text: Protecting Information: From Classical Error Correction to Quantum Cryptography, S. Loepp & W. K. Wooters, Cambridge Press, 2006

Secondary Text: Quantum Computation and Quantum Information, M. Nielsen and I. L. Chuang, Cambridge Press, 2006.

Other Background papers and links to be added

Purchase  Class Text Online (ebook or paperback). Note UNSW Library has online* copies and hardcopies.

*Library online copies have limited number of people who can view at any one time.



China launches world’s first quantum satellite –ABC News


Latest updates on quantum communication from