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Title: Variational consistent histories as a hybrid algorithm for quantum foundations

Abstract

Although quantum computers are predicted to have many commercial applications, less attention has been given to their potential for resolving foundational issues in quantum mechanics. Here we focus on quantum computers’ utility for the Consistent Histories formalism, which has previously been employed to study quantum cosmology, quantum paradoxes, and the quantum-to-classical transition. We present a variational hybrid quantum-classical algorithm for finding consistent histories, which should revitalize interest in this formalism by allowing classically impossible calculations to be performed. In our algorithm, the quantum computer evaluates the decoherence functional (with exponential speedup in both the number of qubits and the number of times in the history) and a classical optimizer adjusts the history parameters to improve consistency. We implement our algorithm on a cloud quantum computer to find consistent histories for a spin in a magnetic field and on a simulator to observe the emergence of classicality for a chiral molecule.

Authors:
ORCiD logo; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program; USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES). Materials Sciences & Engineering Division
OSTI Identifier:
1619649
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1659177
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-18-31704
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723; 3438; PII: 11417
Grant/Contract Number:  
89233218CNA000001; FQXi-1821
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Nature Communications
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Nature Communications Journal Volume: 10 Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-1723
Publisher:
Nature Publishing Group
Country of Publication:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Subject:
97 MATHEMATICS AND COMPUTING; computer science; information theory and computation; quantum information; theoretical physics

Citation Formats

Arrasmith, Andrew, Cincio, Lukasz, Sornborger, Andrew T., Zurek, Wojciech H., and Coles, Patrick J. Variational consistent histories as a hybrid algorithm for quantum foundations. United Kingdom: N. p., 2019. Web. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-11417-0.
Arrasmith, Andrew, Cincio, Lukasz, Sornborger, Andrew T., Zurek, Wojciech H., & Coles, Patrick J. Variational consistent histories as a hybrid algorithm for quantum foundations. United Kingdom. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-11417-0
Arrasmith, Andrew, Cincio, Lukasz, Sornborger, Andrew T., Zurek, Wojciech H., and Coles, Patrick J. Wed . "Variational consistent histories as a hybrid algorithm for quantum foundations". United Kingdom. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-11417-0.
@article{osti_1619649,
title = {Variational consistent histories as a hybrid algorithm for quantum foundations},
author = {Arrasmith, Andrew and Cincio, Lukasz and Sornborger, Andrew T. and Zurek, Wojciech H. and Coles, Patrick J.},
abstractNote = {Although quantum computers are predicted to have many commercial applications, less attention has been given to their potential for resolving foundational issues in quantum mechanics. Here we focus on quantum computers’ utility for the Consistent Histories formalism, which has previously been employed to study quantum cosmology, quantum paradoxes, and the quantum-to-classical transition. We present a variational hybrid quantum-classical algorithm for finding consistent histories, which should revitalize interest in this formalism by allowing classically impossible calculations to be performed. In our algorithm, the quantum computer evaluates the decoherence functional (with exponential speedup in both the number of qubits and the number of times in the history) and a classical optimizer adjusts the history parameters to improve consistency. We implement our algorithm on a cloud quantum computer to find consistent histories for a spin in a magnetic field and on a simulator to observe the emergence of classicality for a chiral molecule.},
doi = {10.1038/s41467-019-11417-0},
journal = {Nature Communications},
number = 1,
volume = 10,
place = {United Kingdom},
year = {2019},
month = {7}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-11417-0

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 7 works
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    Quantum Pure State Tomography via Variational Hybrid Quantum-Classical Method
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