Physical Layer Key Generation between Backscatter Devices over Ambient RF Signals

Pu Wang, Long Jiao, Kai Zeng, Zheng Yan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
42 Downloads (Pure)


Ambient backscatter communication (AmBC), which enables energy harvesting and ultra-low-power communication by utilizing ambient radio frequency (RF) signals, has emerged as a cutting-edge technology to realize numerous Internet of Things (IoT) applications. However, the current literature lacks efficient secret key sharing solutions for resource-limited devices in AmBC systems to protect the backscatter communications, especially for private data transmission. Thus, we propose a novel physical layer key generation scheme between backscatter devices (BDs) by exploiting received superposed ambient signals. Based on the repeated patterns (i.e., cyclic prefix in OFDM symbols) in ambient RF signals, we present a joint transceiver design of BD backscatter waveform and BD receiver to extract the downlink signal and the backscatter signal from the superposed signals. By multiplying the downlink signal and the backscatter signal, we can actually obtain the triangle channel information as a shared random secret source for key generation. Besides, we study the trade-off between the rate of secret key generation and harvested energy by modeling it as a joint optimization problem. Finally, extensive numerical simulations are provided to evaluate the key generation performance, energy harvesting performance, and their trade-offs under various system settings.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationINFOCOM 2021 - IEEE Conference on Computer Communications
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9780738112817
Publication statusPublished - May 2021
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventIEEE Conference on Computer Communications - Virtual Conference, Vancouver, Canada
Duration: 10 May 202113 May 2021
Conference number: 39

Publication series

NameProceedings - IEEE INFOCOM
ISSN (Print)0743-166X


ConferenceIEEE Conference on Computer Communications
Abbreviated titleINFOCOM


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