According to the results of the competitive selection of leading research centers (LRC) in the framework of the national program “Digital Economy of the Russian Federation”, which was carried out by the order of the Ministry of Communications of Russia with expert analytical support of RVC, ITMO University received grant support from RVC in the amount of 300 million roubles. In partnership with RZhD (Russian Railways), OJSC, the university's specialists will develop a digital platform hardware-software solution “Quantum Communication Platform of the Digital Economy”. A pilot zone for the introduction of the platform will be launched in 2021 on the RZhD (Russian Railways), OJSC infrastructure.
The platform consists of hardware and software components that form the main center for quantum networks. A quantum system is an additional layer of a data transmission network that ensures its protection using quantum cryptography technology. The introduction of this technology will significantly increase the information security of existing communication networks, including protection against promising threats. When creating the network, Russian-made quantum cryptography equipment will be used.
A feature of the quantum communication platform is the ability to build on its basis quantum networks of any scale, from local to backbone networks covering the whole country. The platform is designed to provide all the essential functions of a quantum network and implement a service model for providing services: data protection, service management, and monitoring.
The strategic industrial partner of the project, providing a pilot implementation of the platform, is RZhD (Russian Railways), OJSC.
During operation, the developed platform will provide commercial services and services for quantum-protected data transmission. This will allow to reduce the cost of operating a secure infrastructure by several times and transfer the security of the transmitted data to a qualitatively new level, unattainable for classical systems. After certification of the developed solutions, the platform can be used to transfer confidential information of various types. The first customers are expected to be financial institutions, state corporations, manufacturing enterprises, and infrastructure facilities.
This project is unique to Russia. In the world, integrated platform solutions currently exist only in China.
In the future, based on the already created vital centers, it will be possible to create similar regional, intracity, and even local networks through which people can gain access to quantum Internet.
Over the past ten years, the volume of data transmission has increased by 50 times. By the end of 2020, the number of devices integrated into a cyber-physical system of the Internet of Things in the world will increase to 20 billion. In this regard, the demand for effective, fast and secure communication channels will proliferate. Smart city technologies, unmanned vehicles, and intelligent manufacturing will require fast data exchange with maximum security from hacking and hacker attacks.