International Journal of Theoretical Physics

, Volume 57, Issue 9, pp 2755–2766 | Cite as

Four-State Continuous-Variable Quantum Key Distribution with Photon Subtraction

  • Fei Li
  • Yijun Wang
  • Qin LiaoEmail author
  • Ying Guo


Four-state continuous-variable quantum key distribution (CVQKD) is one of the discretely modulated CVQKD which generates four nonorthogonal coherent states and exploits the sign of the measured quadrature of each state to encode information rather than uses the quadrature \(\hat {x}\) or \(\hat {p}\) itself. It has been proven that four-state CVQKD is more suitable than Gaussian modulated CVQKD in terms of transmission distance. In this paper, we propose an improved four-state CVQKD using an non-Gaussian operation, photon subtraction. A suitable photon-subtraction operation can be exploited to improve the maximal transmission of CVQKD in point-to-point quantum communication since it provides a method to enhance the performance of entanglement-based (EB) CVQKD. Photon subtraction not only can lengthen the maximal transmission distance by increasing the signal-to-noise rate but also can be easily implemented with existing technologies. Security analysis shows that the proposed scheme can lengthen the maximum transmission distance. Furthermore, by taking finite-size effect into account we obtain a tighter bound of the secure distance, which is more practical than that obtained in the asymptotic limit.


Quantum key distribution Nonorthogonal coherent states Photon subtraction 



This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 61379153, No. 61572529).


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Information Science EngineeringCentral South UniversityChangshaChina

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