Quantum state preparation by phase randomization

Boixo, S.
Knill, E.
Somma, R. D.
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A computation in adiabatic quantum computing is implemented by traversing a path of nondegenerate eigenstates of a continuous family of Hamiltonians. We introduce a method that traverses a discretized form of the path: At each step we apply the instantaneous Hamiltonian for a random time. The resulting decoherence approximates a projective measurement onto the desired eigenstate, achieving a version of the quantum Zeno effect. If negative evolution times can be implemented with constant overhead, then the average absolute evolution time required by our method is O(L^2/Delta) for constant error probability, where L is the length of the path of eigenstates and Delta is the minimum spectral gap of the Hamiltonian. Making explicit the dependence on the path length is useful for cases where L does not depend on Delta. The complexity of our method has a logarithmic improvement over previous algorithms of this type. The same cost applies to the discrete-time case, where a family of unitary operators is given and each unitary and its inverse can be used. Restriction to positive evolution times incurs an error that decreases exponentially with the cost. Applications of this method to unstructured search and quantum sampling are considered. In particular, we discuss the quantum simulated annealing algorithm for solving combinatorial optimization problems. This algorithm provides a quadratic speed-up in the gap of the stochastic matrix over its classical counterpart implemented via Markov chain Monte Carlo.
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Quantum Physics