China is set to lead the development of quantum science globally when the world's first quantum satellite and a 1,000-kilometer quantum communication line connecting Shanghai and Beijing start operating in the second half of the year, a Shanghai-based national quantum research center said yesterday.
"The satellite will blast off in the second half — the first quantum communications satellite in the world," Pan Jianwei, the director of the center in Zhangjiang High-Tech Park in Shanghai, said yesterday.
A telecommunication line incorporating quantum-based data encryption technology will start operating later this year to connect Shanghai and Beijing, added Pan, who is also executive vice chairman of the University of Science and Technology of China.
Quantum technology features top-level encryption security compared with traditional communication lines. Quantum computing, although in its infancy, will be "several hundreds of million times faster" compared with today's super-computers, said Pan.
Quantum communications will be first used in the finance industry requiring high-level security. It will also be used in Internet firms that handle massive user data, experts said.
The quantum center eyes possible cooperation with Alibaba, Tencent and ZTE, Pan said.China.org.cn
Chinese tech set to take quantum leap