VanQver: The Variational and Adiabatically Navigated Quantum Eigensolver

By Shunji Matsuura, Takeshi Yamazaki, Valentin Senicourt, & Arman Zaribafiyan

The accelerated progress in manufacturing noisy intermediate-scale quantum (NISQ) computing hardware has opened the possibility of exploring its application in transforming approaches to solving computationally challenging problems. The important limitations common among all NISQ computing technologies are the absence of error correction and the short coherence time, which limit the computational power of these systems. Shortening the required time of a single run of a quantum algorithm is essential for reducing environment-induced errors and for the efficiency of the computation. We have investigated the ability of a variational version of adiabatic quantum computation (AQC) to generate an accurate state more efficiently compared to existing adiabatic methods. The standard AQC method uses a time-dependent Hamiltonian, connecting the initial Hamiltonian with the final Hamiltonian. In the current approach, a navigator Hamiltonian is introduced which has a finite amplitude only in the middle of the annealing process. Both the initial and navigator Hamiltonians are determined using variational methods. The cluster operator of coupled-cluster theory, truncated to single and double excitations, is used as a navigator Hamiltonian. A comparative study of our variational algorithm (VanQver) with that of standard AQC, starting with a Hartree–Fock Hamiltonian, is presented. The results indicate that the introduction of the navigator Hamiltonian significantly improves the annealing time required to achieve chemical accuracy by two to three orders of magnitude. The efficiency of the method is demonstrated in the ground-state energy estimation of molecular systems, namely, H2, P4, and LiH.