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The bottom insets are representations of the molecular geometry (not to scale).For all the three molecules, the deviation of the experimental results from the exact curves is well explained by the stochastic simulations.
Our scheme contrasts from previously studied quantum simulation algorithms, which focus on adapting classical molecular simulation schemes to quantum hardware – and in so doing not effectively taking into account the limited overheads of current realistic quantum devices.
So, instead of forcing classical computing methods onto quantum hardware, we have reversed the approach and asked: how can we extract the maximal quantum computational power out of our seven qubit processor?
Such information is critical for chemists to design new molecules, reactions, and chemical processes for industrial applications.
*A couple of notes about orbitals: One, electrons don’t spin around an atom’s nucleus like planets around the Sun, as is often depicted in simplistic cartoons.
The experimental and numerical results presented are for circuits of depth d = 1.
The error bars on the experimental data are smaller than the size of the markers.The experiments we detail in our paper were not run on our currently publically available five qubit and 16 qubit processors on the cloud.But developers and users of the IBM Q experience can now access quantum chemistry Jupyter notebooks on the QISKit github repo.The particular encoding from orbitals to qubits studied in this work can be used to simplify simulations of even larger molecule and we expect the opportunity to explore such larger simulations in the future, when the quantum computational power (or “quantum volume”) of IBM Q systems has increased.While Be H is the largest molecule ever simulated by a quantum computer to date, the considered model of the molecule itself is still simple enough for classical computers to simulate exactly.The results demonstrate a path of exploration for near-term quantum systems to enhance our understanding of complex chemical reactions that could lead to practical applications.(Kandala et al.; Nature) Although our seven qubit quantum processor is not fully error-corrected and fault-tolerant, the coherence times of the individual qubits last about 50 µs.IBM scientists have developed a new approach to simulate molecules on a quantum computer that may one day help revolutionize chemistry and materials science.The scientists successfully used six qubits on a purpose-built seven-qubit quantum processor to address the molecular structure problem for beryllium hydride (Be H2) – the largest molecule simulated on a quantum computer to date.What are their limitations, and how do researchers expect to overcome them?https://arxiv.org/abs/1801.00862"Noisy Intermediate-Scale Quantum (NISQ) technology will be available in the near future.