QIC Abstracts

 Vol.5 No.1 January 01, 2005
Research and Review Articles:
New encoding schemes for quantum authentication (pp001-012)
         P. Garcia-Fernandez, E. Fernandez-Martinez, E. Perez and D.J. Santos
We study the potential of general quantum operations, Trace-Preserving Completely-Positive Maps (TPCPs), as encoding and decoding mechanisms in quantum authentication protocols. The study shows that these general operations do not offer significant advantage over unitary encodings. We also propose a practical authentication protocol based on the use of two successive unitary encodings.

Qubit channels which require four inputs to achieve capacity: Implications for additivity conjectures (pp013-031)
         M. Hayashi, H. Imai, K. Matsumoto, M.B. Ruskai and T. Shimono
An example is given of a qubit quantum channel which requires four inputs to maximize the Holevo capacity. The example is one of a family of channels which are related to 3-state channels. The capacity of the product channel is studied and numerical evidence presented which strongly suggests additivity. The numerical evidence also supports a conjecture about the concavity of output entropy as a function of entanglement parameters. However, an example is presented which shows that for some channels this conjecture does not hold for all input states. A numerical algorithm for finding the capacity and optimal inputs is presented and its relation to a relative entropy optimization discussed.

Asymmetric phase covariant d-dimensional cloning (pp032-039)
         L.-P. Lamoureux and N.J. Cerf
We consider cloning transformations of d-dimensional states of the form $e^{i\phi_0}|0> + e^{i\phi_1}|1> +...+ e^{i\phi_{d-1}}|d-1>$ that are covariant with respect to rotations of the phases $\phi_i$'s. The optimal cloning maps are easily obtained using a well-defined general characterization of state-dependent $1 \rightarrow 2$ cloning transformations in arbitrary dimensions. Our results apply to symmetric as well as asymmetric cloners, so that the balance between the fidelity of the two clones can be analyzed.

Some attacks on quantum-based cryptographic protocols (pp040-047)
         H-K Lo and T-M Ko
Quantum-based cryptographic protocols are often said to enjoy security guaranteed by the fundamental laws of physics. However, even carefully designed quantum-based cryptographic schemes may be susceptible to subtle attacks that are outside the original design. As an example, we give attacks against a recently proposed ``secure communication using mesoscopic coherent states'', which employs mesoscopic states, rather than single-photon states. Our attacks can be used either as a known-plaintext attack or in the case where the plaintext has not been randomized. One of our attacks requires beamsplitters and the replacement of a lossy channel by a lossless one. It is successful provided that the original loss in the channel is so big that Eve can obtain $2^k$ copies of what Bob receives, where $k$ is the length of the seed key pre-shared by Alice and Bob. In addition, substantial improvements over such an exhaustive key search attack can be made, whenever a key is reused. Furthermore, we remark that, under the same assumption of a known or non-random plaintext, Grover's exhaustive key search attack can be applied directly to "secure communication using mesoscopic coherent states", whenever the channel loss is more than 50 percent. Therefore, as far as information-theoretic security is concerned, optically amplified signals necessarily degrade the security of the proposed scheme, when the plaintext is known or non-random. Our attacks apply even if the mesoscopic scheme is used only for key generation with a subsequent use of the key for one-time-pad encryption. Studying those attacks can help us to better define the risk models and parameter spaces in which quantum-based cryptographic schemes can operate securely. Finally, we remark that our attacks do not affect standard protocols such as Bennett-Brassard BB84 protocol or Bennett B92 protocol, which rely on single-photon signals.

Quantum circuits for incompletely specified two-qubit operators (pp048-056)
         V.V. Shende and I.L. Markov
While the question ``how many CNOT gates are needed to simulate an arbitrary two-qubit operator'' has been conclusively answered -- three are necessary and sufficient -- previous work on this topic assumes that one wants to simulate a given unitary operator up to global phase. However, in many practical cases additional degrees of freedom are allowed. For example, if the computation is to be followed by a given projective measurement, many dissimilar operators achieve the same output distributions on all input states. Alternatively, if it is known that the input state is $\ket{0}$, the action of the given operator on all orthogonal states is immaterial. In such cases, we say that the unitary operator is incompletely specified; in this work, we take up the practical challenge of satisfying a given specification with the smallest possible circuit. In particular, we identify cases in which such operators can be implemented using fewer quantum gates than are required for generic completely specified operators.

Notes on super-operator norms induced by Schatten norms (pp057-067)
         J. Watrous
Let $\Phi$ be a super-operator, i.e., a linear mapping of the form $\Phi:\mathrm{L}(\mathcal{F})\rightarrow\mathrm{L}(\mathcal{G})$ for finite dimensional Hilbert spaces $\mathcal{F}$ and $\mathcal{G}$. This paper considers basic properties of the super-operator norms defined by $\|\Phi\|_{q\rightarrow p}= \sup\{\|\Phi(X)\|_p/\|X\|_q\,:\,X\not=0\}$, induced by Schatten norms for $1\leq p,q\leq\infty$. These super-operator norms arise in various contexts in the study of quantum information. In this paper it is proved that if $\Phi$ is completely positive, the value of the supremum in the definition of $\|\Phi\|_{q\rightarrow p}$ is achieved by a positive semidefinite operator $X$, answering a question recently posed by King and Ruskai~\cite{KingR04}. However, for any choice of $p\in [1,\infty]$, there exists a super-operator $\Phi$ that is the {\em difference} of two completely positive, trace-preserving super-operators such that all Hermitian $X$ fail to achieve the supremum in the definition of $\|\Phi\|_{1\rightarrow p}$. Also considered are the properties of the above norms for super-operators tensored with the identity super-operator. In particular, it is proved that for all $p\geq 2$, $q\leq 2$, and arbitrary $\Phi$, the norm $\|\Phi \|_{q\rightarrow p}$ is stable under tensoring $\Phi$ with the identity super-operator, meaning that $\|\Phi \|_{q\rightarrow p} = \|\Phi \otimes I\|_{q\rightarrow p}$. For $1\leq p < 2$, the norm $\|\Phi\|_{1\rightarrow p}$ may fail to be stable with respect to tensoring $\Phi$ with the identity super-operator as just described, but $\|\Phi\otimes I\|_{1\rightarrow p}$ is stable in this sense for $I$ the identity super-operator on $\mathrm{L}(\mathcal{H})$ for $\op{dim}(\mathcal{H}) = \op{dim}(\mathcal{F})$. This generalizes and simplifies a proof due to Kitaev \cite{Kitaev97} that established this fact for the case $p=1$.

An information theoretical model for quantum secret sharing schemes  (pp068-079)
         H. Imai, J. Mueller-Quade, A.C. A. Nascimento, P. Tuyls and A. Winter
Similarly to earlier models for quantum error correcting codes, we introduce a quantum information theoretical model for quantum secret sharing schemes. This model provides new insights into the theory of quantum secret sharing. By using our model, among other results, we give a shorter proof of Gottesman's theorem that the size of the shares in a quantum secret sharing scheme must be as large as the secret itself. Also, we introduced approximate quantum secret sharing schemes and showed robustness of quantum secret sharing schemes by extending Gottesman's theorem to the approximate case.

Equiangular spherical codes in quantum cryptography (pp080-091)
         J M Renes
Quantum key distribution protocols based on equiangular spherical codes are introduced and their behavior under the intercept/resend attack investigated. Such protocols offer a greater range of secure noise tolerance and speed options than protocols based on their cousins, the mutually-unbiased bases, while also enabling the determination of the channel noise rate without the need to sacrifice key bits. For fixed number of signal states in a given dimension, the spherical code protocols offer Alice and Bob more noise tolerance at the price of slower key generation rates.

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