Abstract

In this paper, we analyze the impact of the spontaneous Raman scattered noise generated from multiple optical classical channels on a single quantum key distribution channel, all within the telecom C-band. We experimentally measure the noise generated from up to 14 continuous-wave laser sources with different wavelengths using the dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) standard, in both propagation directions in respect to the QKD channel, over different standard SMF-28 fiber lengths. We then simulate the expected secure key generation rate for a decoy-states-based system as a function of distance under the presence of simultaneous telecom traffic with different modulation techniques, and show a severe penalty growing with the number of classical channels present. Our results show that, for in-band coexistence, the telecom channels should be distributed as close as possible from the quantum channel to avoid the Raman noise peaks. Operation far from the zero dispersion wavelength of the fiber is also beneficial as it greatly reduces the generation of four-wave mixing inside the quantum channel. Furthermore, narrow spectral filtering on the quantum channels is required due to the harsh limitations of performing QKD under real telecom environments, with the quantum and several classical channels coexisting in the same ITU-T C-band.

© 2014 IEEE

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