Qrypt Licensing of Quantum Random Number Generator from ORNL

Qrypt Licensing of Quantum Random Number Generator from ORNL

With the global cybersecurity market expected to grow from $160 billion in 2015 to $170 billion by 2020, quantum random number generators (QRNGs) have the potential to impact the cryptography and multifactor authentication markets that serve governments and businesses worldwide. Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s (ORNL) QRNG is positioned to maximize this market potential and public benefit thanks to an excellent approach to technology transfer that has resulted in significant improvements in the state of the art, along with a strategic licensing approach. The result is an exclusive license to start-up Qrypt—an innovative, well-financed start-up venture focused on building the cybersecurity market’s only practical and scalable quantum secure encryption technology. With development collaborations ongoing with ORNL, Qrypt is uniquely positioned to exploit the cybersecurity market using ORNL’s patented technology in combination with its own intellectual property (IP).

ORNL’s key efforts included both market preparation of the technology and an extensive licensing strategy. A milestone-driven, two-year development effort using ORNL’s unique Technology Innovation Program (TIP) enabled a deliberate approach to maturing the technology for market. Through the TIP, ORNL inventors reduced the risk of pseudo-randomness, which is susceptible to hacking. They also improved the speed and bias of the device compared with the previous state of the art—two of the major outstanding issues that have limited QRNG market adoption and penetration. In addition, the end-user cost of the technology was reduced to approximately $100, making it the most affordable QRNG available.

The TIP also provided a springboard for licensing the technology: The unique program provided a framework for selecting the partner best qualified to maximize the commercial potential. The technology incubation allowed the licensee to not only understand the technology’s benefits in theory, but also to observe a working prototype in order to demonstrate the advantages in practice.

Building on its success with the TIP, ORNL’s Technology Transfer Office developed a robust marketing campaign, which brought the technology to Qrypt’s attention and generated serious interest from three potential licensees. ORNL’s strategic selection of Qrypt as an exclusive licensee and its use of non-restricted royalties is enabling further technology development that improves Qrypt’s own products and strengthens its IP position.

The ORNL inventors’ incubation and market preparation of the QRNG technology, combined with the strategic licensing approach of technology transfer personnel and the collaborative development efforts of Qrypt, have resulted in a technology that dramatically improves upon the state of the art and is uniquely positioned to maximize adoption and penetration by the rapidly growing cybersecurity industry.

Contact: Dr. Eugene Cochran, (865) 576-2830, cochraner@ornl.gov

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