A P4 Data Plane for the Quantum Internet


The quantum technology revolution brings with it the promise of a quantum internet. A new — quantum — network stack will be needed to account for the fundamentally new properties of quantum entanglement. The first realisations of quantum networks are imminent and research interest in quantum network protocols has started growing. In the non-quantum world, programmable data planes have broken the pattern of ossification of the protocol stack and enabled a new — software-defined — network software architecture. Similarly, a programmable quantum data plane could pave the way for a software-defined quantum network architecture. In this paper, we demonstrate how we use P4$_{16}$ to explore abstractions and device architectures for quantum networks.