A large-alphabet three-party quantum key distribution protocol based on orbital and spin angular momenta hybrid entanglement

Hong Lai*, Mingxing Luo, Jun Zhang, Josef Pieprzyk, Lei Pan, Mehmet A. Orgun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The orthogonality of the orbital angular momentum (OAM) eigenstates enables a single photon carry an arbitrary number of bits. Moreover, additional degrees of freedom (DOFs) of OAM can span a high-dimensional Hilbert space, which could greatly increase information capacity and security. Moreover, the use of the spin angular momentum–OAM hybrid entangled state can increase Shannon dimensionality, because photons can be hybrid entangled in multiple DOFs. Based on these observations, we develop a hybrid entanglement quantum key distribution (QKD) protocol to achieve three-party quantum key distribution without classical message exchanges. In our proposed protocol, a communicating party uses a spatial light modulator (SLM) and a specific phase hologram to modulate photons’ OAM state. Similarly, the other communicating parties use their SLMs and the fixed different phase holograms to modulate the OAM entangled photon pairs, producing the shared key among the parties Alice, Bob and Charlie without classical message exchanges. More importantly, when the same operation is repeated for every party, our protocol could be extended to a multiple-party QKD protocol.

Original languageEnglish
Article number162
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalQuantum Information Processing
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018



  • Degrees of freedom
  • Hybrid entanglement
  • Orbital angular momentum
  • Shannon dimensionality
  • Spatial light modulator
  • Spin angular momenta

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