Skip to main content

A physical zero-knowledge object-comparison system for nuclear warhead verification

Author(s): Philippe, S; Goldston, Robert J; Glaser, A; D Errico, F

To refer to this page use:
Abstract: © 2016 The Author(s).Zero-knowledge proofs are mathematical cryptographic methods to demonstrate the validity of a claim while providing no further information beyond the claim itself. The possibility of using such proofs to process classified and other sensitive physical data has attracted attention, especially in the field of nuclear arms control. Here we demonstrate a non-electronic fast neutron differential radiography technique using superheated emulsion detectors that can confirm that two objects are identical without revealing their geometry or composition. Such a technique could form the basis of a verification system that could confirm the authenticity of nuclear weapons without sharing any secret design information. More broadly, by demonstrating a physical zero-knowledge proof that can compare physical properties of objects, this experiment opens the door to developing other such secure proof-systems for other applications.
Publication Date: 20-Sep-2016
Electronic Publication Date: 20-Sep-2016
Citation: Philippe, S, Goldston, RJ, Glaser, A, D Errico, F. (2016). A physical zero-knowledge object-comparison system for nuclear warhead verification. Nature Communications, 7 (10.1038/ncomms12890
DOI: doi:10.1038/ncomms12890
EISSN: 2041-1723
Pages: 1-7
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: Nature Communications
Version: Final published version. This is an open access article.

Items in OAR@Princeton are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.