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We establish the classical capacity of optical quantum channels as a sharp transition between two regimes - one which is an error-free regime for communication rates below the capacity, and the other in which the probability of correctly decoding a classical message converges exponentially fast to zero if the communication rate exceeds the classical capacity. This result is obtained by proving a strong converse theorem for the classical capacity of all phase-insensitive bosonic Gaussian channels, a well-established model of optical quantum communication channels, such as lossy optical fibers, amplifier, and free-space communication. The theorem holds under a particular photon-number occupation constraint, which we describe in detail in this paper. Our result bolsters the understanding of the classical capacity of these channels and opens the path to applications, such as proving the security of noisy quantum storage models of cryptography with optical links.

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IEEE Transactions on Information Theory

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