Indian Navy will partner with a department of science and technology institute to develop secure maritime communications using quantum technology.

The Raman Research Institute (RRI), the DST institute, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Indian Navy’s research and development establishment -- the Weapons and Electronics Systems Engineering Establishment (WESEE) -- to lead the efforts towards developing quantum key distribution techniques that the maritime armed force could leverage towards securing free space communications, said the Ministry of Science and Technology in a statement.

The MoU, valid for a period of five years, was signed between Professor Tarun Souradeep, Director, RRI, and Vice Admiral Sandeep Naithani, Chief of Materiel, Indian Navy.

“I am absolutely delighted that Indian Science and Technology ecosystem has been opening borders in recent years that enable talented and world-class researchers in the academic research institutions to contribute to the growth of Science and Technology capabilities in strategic areas of national importance,” Prof Souradeep was quoted by the Ministry as having said at the event.

Professor Urbasi Sinha, Group Head, QuIC lab, said, “We are excited with the collaboration and believe that with our expertise in the domain of secure quantum communications, we will be able to help foster cutting-edge research towards identification of potential maritime use-cases for the Indian Navy.”

The Ministry said that some of the lab’s major achievements include the development of an end-to-end simulation toolkit named “qkdSim”, ensuring safety in communication platforms, establishing secure communication between two buildings, and, more recently, between a stationary source and a mobile receiver.

The Navy is also looking at emerging deep-tech quantum security company, Scytale Alpha, for developing “secure audio-visual communication suite”.