Date April 3, 2015
Speaker Jarrod McClean Harvard University
Topic Using quantum computers to change the way we study chemical problems

At a glance, the Schrodinger equation has offered the opportunity to design and predict chemical processes from little more than the solution of a large eigenvalue problem, the solution of which is the focus of quantum chemistry. Unfortunately, getting very accurate predictions has been prohibitively expensive on conventional computers. Quantum computing offers promising new solutions to problems faced in quantum chemistry. In this talk, I will introduce some of the methods used in traditional electronic structure calculations and their limitations. I will then show how one can use a quantum computer to lift many of these limitations and perform exact computations efficiently for many instances. This will be followed by recent advances in this area, including a relatively new algorithm that was implemented on a quantum photonic device designed to maximize the utilization of quantum resources through co-design.