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Marco Lucamarini
Chair - Experimental Quantum Communications & Director of Research - York Centre for Quantum Technologies



Professor Lucamarini joined the University of York in 2020, coming from a senior position in Toshiba’s Cambridge Research Laboratory, where he conducted research into optical physics, quantum information and quantum key distribution (QKD), bringing the UK’s first quantum network into existence.

In 2018, he was instrumental in leading a breakthrough which marks the beginning of a quantum repeaters era. The novel scheme, termed 'Twin-Field QKD', can extend the range of QKD to well over 500 km when applied down standard optical fibre and beyond 100 dB in a lossy quantum channel. This makes quantum secure communications on fibre links between geographically dispersed cities possible for the first time.

Prior to that, he worked at a number of universities and institutions contributing to pioneering experiments such as the active quantum teleportation of a photon, the open-loop protection of a polarization qubit and two-way protocols for QKD.


2020: Full Professor, University of York (UK)
2017: Professorship Habilitation in Experimental and Theoretical Solid State Physics (Italy)
2016-2020: Senior Research Scientist, Toshiba's Cambridge Research Labs (UK)
2012-2016: Research Scientist, Toshiba's Cambridge Research Labs (UK)
2006-2012: Research Affiliate, School of Science and Technology, University of Camerino (Italy)
2005-2006: Senior Researcher, Malaysian Institute of Microelectronic Systems (Malaysia)
2005-2011: Visiting Scientist at NUS (Singapore), University of Toronto (Canada), University of Wien (Austria) and ETH Zurich (Switzerland)
2005: PhD in Physics, University of Rome "Sapienza" (Italy)
2000: Laurea degree (BSc & MSc) in Physics, University of Rome "Sapienza" (Italy)

Departmental roles

Chair in Experimental Quantum Communications

University roles

Director of Research at the York Centre of Quantum Technologies (YCQT)



Quantum Cryptography, Communications & Networks

Quantum Optics, Generation of Single & Entangled Photons

Quantum Information & Computation

Quantum Technologies, Repeaters & Memories

Implementation Security of Quantum Systems

Design and implementation of the first effective quantum repeater

First quantum digital signatures secure from attacks on detectors

Record high secure key rate quantum key distribution and measurement-device-independent quantum key distribution systems

Quantum Networks in Tokyo and Cambridge

Implementation security of real quantum communication systems

Standardization of quantum key distribution


Small, medium and large-scale experimental quantum communications

Research group(s)

Physics, Experimental Quantum Communications

Available PhD research projects

I welcome enquiries and applications from those interested in quantum communications at any scale, small, medium and long, both in free space and in optical fibres, and in the generation and manipulation of single and entangled photons. Special emphasis will be given to projects related to twin-field and continuous-variable quantum key distribution. 

External activities

Invited talks and conferences

- Invited Talk: “Quantum Key Distribution beyond the Repeaterless Rate-Loss Limit”, Photonics West - Opto, Session 2, San Francisco, USA (Feb 2020).
- Invited Talk: “Quantum Communications beyond the Repeaterless Secret Key Capacity”, 2nd IEEE BICOP 2019, London, UK (Dec 2019).
- Invited Talk: “Measurement Device Independent Quantum Cryptography”, Single Photon Workshop (SPW), Milan, Italy (Oct 2019).
- Invited Talk: “Quantum Communications Networks”, 44th European Conference on Optical Communication (ECOC), CLEO/EUROPE Focus Meeting, Rome, Italy (Sep 2018).
- Invited Tutorial: “Recent progress on Measurement-Device-Independent Quantum Key Distribution”, QCrypt 2018, Shanghai, China (Aug 2018).
- Invited Talk: “Quantum Communication Networks with Untrusted Nodes”, Int. Symp. on Single photon-based Quantum Technologies, Berlin, Germany (June 2018).
- Invited Tutorial: “Measurement-Device-Independent Quantum Key Distribution”, QCall Summer School, Baiona, Spain (May 2018).
- Invited Tutorial: “Industrial and Commercial aspects of Quantum Key Distribution”, QCall Summer School, Baiona, Spain (May 2018).
- Invited Talk: “Forward-looking criteria for the certification of quantum key distribution systems”, QKD Symposium on 'Assurance and Certification for Quantum Communication Technologies', Cambridge, UK (Sep 2017).
- Invited Talk: “Experimental reconfigurable quantum network and measurement-device-independent quantum digital signatures”, TyQI - Trustworthy Quantum Information, Paris, France (Jun 2017).
- Invited Talk: “Quantum key distribution without detector vulnerabilities”, Heriot-Watt Colloquia, Edinburgh, UK (Sep 2016).
- Invited Talk: “Quantum key distribution without detector vulnerabilities in the finite-size scenario using optically-seeded lasers”, SPIE Security + Defence, Edinburgh, UK (Sep 2016).
- Invited Talk: “Enabling high-rate decoy-state MDI QKD in the finite-size regime”, Trustworthy Quantum Information (TyQI), Shanghai, China (Jun 2016).
- Invited Talk: “Technical aspects of QKD Security Certification”, 2nd UK-Japan Quantum Technology Workshop, British Embassy in Tokyo, Japan (Mar 2016).
- Invited Talk: “Update on ETSI ISG QKD”, ETSI Quantum Safe Cryptography Workshop, Seoul, Korea (Oct 2015).
- Invited Talk: “Practical security of a quantum key distribution transmitter”, SPIE Security + Defense, Toulouse, France (Sep 2015).
- Hot Topic Talk: “Closing the Performance Gap of Measurement-Device-Independent Quantum Key Distribution”, QCrypt 2015, Tokyo, Japan (Sep 2015).
- Invited Talk: “Efficient decoy-state QKD in the finite-size scenario”, seQre 2014, Wroclaw, Poland (Jan 2014).
- Invited Talk: “Practical treatment of quantum bugs” SPIE Security + Defense, Edinburgh, UK (Sep 2012).
- Invited Talk: “Experimental inhibition of decoherence on flying qubits via bang bang control”, Italian Quantum Information Science Conference (IQIS) 2008, Unicam, Italy (Oct 2008).
- Opening Talk: “Quantum mechanics for secure communication”, 13° International Conference “Problemi Attuali di Fisica Teorica”, Vietri sul Mare, Italy (30 Mar - 4 Apr 2007).

Media coverage

24/4/2019, W. Tittel, Quantum key distribution breaking limits, News & Views, Nature Photonics
2/5/2018, New Scientist, Quantum internet is one step closer thanks to new theory
3/5/2018, CBR, This Quantum Cryptography Breakthrough Uses Twin Particles of Light
3/5/2018, ComputerWeekly, Fibre network breakthrough has implications for data security
3/5/2018, Cosmos, Quantum communication starts to repeat itself
4/5/2018, Naked security by Sophos, Breakthrough pushes Quantum Key Distribution beyond 500 km
5/5/2018, Nikkei Sangyo Shinbun, Quantum cryptography: Communication distance 500 km to succeed at Toshiba Optical Fiber
28/6/2018, D. F. P. Pile, Twin-Field QKD, Research Highlights, Nature Photonics
3/2/2017, Fibre Systems, A Quantum of Security, interview with M. Lucamarini by A. Extance
18/9/2017,, Toshiba speeds quantum key beyond 10 Mb/s
29/11/2017, IT-Online, Quantum cryptography will be ultra-secure
5/4/2016,, Laser technique promises super-fast and super-secure quantum cryptography
20/9/2016, APS Physics, Synopsis: Controlling a Laser’s Phase
5/10/2015, Electronics, Quantum cryptography demoes 200Gbit/s over 100km fibre
9/9/2015, APS Physics, Synopsis: How to tame a Trojan horse
16/9/2015, PhysicsWorld, Physicists defend against Trojan-horse quantum hackers
17/9/2015,, Researchers develop simple way to ward off Trojan attacks on quantum cryptographic systems

Marco Lucamarini

MSD/208A, Information Centre
Market Square
Department of Physics
University of York
YO10 5DD

Tel: +44 (0)1904 322283
Fax: +44 (0)1904 322214
Room: MSD/208a