We demonstrate that small quantum memories, realized via quantum error correction in multi-qubit devices, can benefit substantially by choosing a quantum code that is tailored to the relevant error model of the system. For a biased noise model, with independent bit and phase flips occurring at different rates, we show that a single code greatly outperforms the well-studied Steane code across the full range of parameters of the noise model, including for unbiased noise. In fact, this tailored code performs almost optimally when compared with 10,000 randomly selected stabilizer codes of comparable experimental complexity. Tailored codes can even outperform the Steane code with realistic experimental noise, and without any increase in the experimental complexity, as we demonstrate by comparison in the observed error model in a recent 7-qubit trapped ion experiment.
Extrapolating physical error rates to logical error rates requires many assumptions and thus can radically under- or overestimate the performance of an error correction implementation. We introduce logical randomized benchmarking, a characterization procedure that directly assesses the performance of a quantum error correction implementation at the logical level, and is motivated by a reduction to the well-studied case of physical randomized benchmarking. We show that our method reliably reports logical performance and can estimate the average probability of correctable and uncorrectable errors for a given code and physical channel.
A major challenge facing existing sequential Monte-Carlo methods for parameter estimation in physics stems from the inability of existing approaches to robustly deal with experiments that have different mechanisms that yield the results with equivalent probability. We address this problem here by proposing a form of particle filtering that clusters the particles that comprise the sequential Monte-Carlo approximation to the posterior before applying a resampler. Through a new graphical approach to thinking about such models, we are able to devise an artificial-intelligence based strategy that automatically learns the shape and number of the clusters in the support of the posterior. We demonstrate the power of our approach by applying it to randomized gap estimation and a form of low circuit-depth phase estimation where existing methods from the physics literature either exhibit much worse performance or even fail completely.
Characterizing quantum systems through experimental data is critical to applications as diverse as metrology and quantum computing. Analyzing this experimental data in a robust and reproducible manner is made challenging, however, by the lack of readily-available software for performing principled statistical analysis. We improve the robustness and reproducibility of characterization by introducing an open-source library, QInfer, to address this need. Our library makes it easy to analyze data from tomography, randomized benchmarking, and Hamiltonian learning experiments either in post-processing, or online as data is acquired. QInfer also provides functionality for predicting the performance of proposed experimental protocols from simulated runs. By delivering easy-to-use characterization tools based on principled statistical analysis, QInfer helps address many outstanding challenges facing quantum technology.
We propose a framework for the systematic and quantitative generalization of Bell's theorem using causal networks. We first consider the multi-objective optimization problem of matching observed data while minimizing the causal effect of nonlocal variables and prove an inequality for the optimal region that both strengthens and generalizes Bell's theorem. To solve the optimization problem (rather than simply bound it), we develop a novel genetic algorithm treating as individuals causal networks. By applying our algorithm to a photonic Bell experiment, we demonstrate the trade-off between the quantitative relaxation of one or more local causality assumptions and the ability of data to match quantum correlations.
We introduce a fast and accurate heuristic for adaptive tomography that addresses many of the limitations of prior methods. Previous approaches were either too computationally intensive or tailored to handle special cases such as single qubits or pure states. By contrast, our approach combines the efficiency of online optimization with generally applicable and well-motivated data-processing techniques. We numerically demonstrate these advantages in several scenarios including mixed states, higher-dimensional systems, and restricted measurements.