D-Wave and predecessors: From simulated to quantum annealing

June 23, 2014

The D-Wave computer is currently the latest link of a long chain of computers designed for the solution of optimization problems. In what sense does it realize quantum computation? We describe the evolution of such computers and confront the different views concerning the quantum properties of the D-wave computer.

Quantum algorithms show several benefits over classical ones. One strong example suggested by Shor in 1994 is the ability to factor numbers which can be effectively done on a quantum computer but is very hard on a classical computer. However, the actual model for the physical construction of a quantum computer is not yet clear. Recently, it was suggested by several research groups that a network of superconducting, D-Wave type qubits, could realize a quantum adiabatic computer and efficiently solve .

The D-wave quantum computer is hereby discussed. The novelty of the D-wave computer should be understood in light of its predecessors. It is an adiabatic quantum computer designed to solve optimization problems. The controversies concerning its and its efficiency are best understood looking back at the history of optimization algorithms. Its predecessors are a linage of optimization algorithms from as far as the Monte-Carlo and Metropolis algorithm, through genetic algorithm, hill-climbing, simulated annealing, quantum adiabatic algorithm and quantum annealing. Special attention is given to the similarities and differences between the algorithms. The D-wave superconductor computer has raised harsh disputes over the question of its actual quantum properties. Therefore, along with the discussion of the works published by the D-wave group, we present a few opposing claims, e.g., those of Smolin, regarding both the quality and "quantumness" of the D-wave adiabatic computer. In addition, we follow the work of Lidar's group which performed several objective tests of the D-wave and compared its performance to other classical and quantum simulated annealing methods.

As an application of discussed algorithms, the authors suggest a novel simulated annealing algorithm for image restoration and outline also its quantum annealing extension. The authors also present a few related ideas concerning the connection between adiabatic computation and quantum protective measurement, and the relation to one-way quantum computers. In addition they discuss a few extensions of the discussed models, e.g. employing temporal rather than spatial correlations and applying the Tsallis distribution.

Explore further: Independent research group testing D-Wave Two finds no quantum speedup

More information: The paper can be found in the International Journal of Quantum Information.: www.worldscientific.com/doi/ab … 42/S0219749914300022

Related Stories

The road to quantum computing

May 15, 2014

Anticipating the advent of the quantum computer, related mathematical methods already provide insight into conventional computer science.

Google engineers open gates to Quantum Computing Playground

May 23, 2014

Does the idea of playing about with a quantum computer please you? If so, you can check out one fresh alternative route, thanks to a group of Google engineers. How about a GPU-accelerated quantum computer? You can take advantage ...

D-Wave uses quantum method to solve protein folding problem

August 21, 2012

(Phys.org) -- While there has been some skepticism as to whether the Canadian company D-Wave’s quantum computing system, the D-Wave One, truly involves quantum computing, the company is intent on proving that the system ...

Efficient distributed quantum computing

February 21, 2013

(Phys.org)—A quantum computer doesn't need to be a single large device but could be built from a network of small parts, new research from the University of Bristol has demonstrated. As a result, building such a computer ...

Recommended for you

Researchers create magnetic RAM

August 23, 2017

MIPT researchers teamed up with collaborators for a successful demonstration of magnetoelectric random access memory (MELRAM). A transition to magnetoelectric memory could enable substantial energy savings, as well as the ...

A silent search for dark matter

August 22, 2017

Results from its first run indicate that XENON1T is the most sensitive dark matter detector on Earth. The sensitivity of the detector—an underground sentinel awaiting a collision that would confirm a hypothesis—stems ...

Physicists explore a new recipe for heating plasma

August 22, 2017

In the quest for fusion energy, scientists have spent decades experimenting with ways to make plasma fuel hot and dense enough to generate significant fusion power. At MIT, researchers have focused their attention on using ...

Scientists accelerate airflow in mid-air

August 21, 2017

When a fan blows air across a room, the airflow typically decelerates and spreads out. Now in a new study, scientists have demonstrated the opposite: an airflow created by a carefully controlled ultrasound array can maintain ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.