Abstract

Data transmission with optical fiber is vulnerable to eavesdropping. Moreover, conventional key distribution technology suffers from increasing computational power and upgraded attack algorithms. To address these issues, quantum key distribution (QKD), a quantum technology that secures secret information (such as a cryptographic key) exchange between two parties, can be used to guarantee secure data transmission. Integrating QKD into existing wavelength division multiplexing optical networks has been verified through a series of experiments, which contribute to ensuring network security and saving fiber resources. This paper addresses the resource assignment problem in QKD-enabled optical networks. First, a QKD-enabled optical network architecture is introduced. A small fraction of wavelength channels are segmented into multiple time slots with optical time division multiplexing technology to construct quantum key channels (QKChs) and measuring-basis channels, and then the remaining wavelengths can construct traditional data channels. Second, a static routing, wavelength, and time-slot assignment (RWTA) strategy is proposed and verified by the integer linear programming formulation and a heuristic algorithm. In the RWTA, QKChs are assigned for service requests according to the security levels specified by relevant key-updating periods. Thus, the secret keys for data encryption can update periodically to enhance security. Simulation results indicate that there is a trade-off between security (i.e., security levels and security-level types) and resource utilization.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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