Telecloning combines cloning (or copying) with teleportation (i.e., disembodied transport).
The scientists have succeeded in making the first remote copies of beams of laser light, by combining quantum cloning with quantum teleportation into a single experimental step. Telecloning is more efficient than any combination of teleportation and local cloning because it relies on a new form of quantum entanglement – multipartite entanglement.
Professor Sam Braunstein, of the Department of Computer Science at York, said: “Quantum mechanics allows us to do things which we previously thought were impossible. In 1998, I was involved in an experiment in America which was one of the first for quantum teleportation in which we transmitted a beam of light without it crossing the physical medium in between.
“This new experiment is an extension of that work. Whether it will change the world for individuals or is just of use to governments or big companies is hard to say. Any new protocol is like a new-born baby and it has to develop, but we know this one could be used to tap cryptographic channels. Quantum cryptographic protocols are so secure that they can not only discover tapping but also where and how much information is leaking out. Now, using telecloning, the identity and location of the eavesdropper can be concealed…”