Quantum advantage for computations with limited space

14 Aug 2020  ·  Dmitri Maslov, Jin-Sung Kim, Sergey Bravyi, Theodore J. Yoder, Sarah Sheldon ·

Quantum computations promise the ability to solve problems intractable in the classical setting. Restricting the types of computations considered often allows to establish a provable theoretical advantage by quantum computations, and later demonstrate it experimentally. In this paper, we consider space-restricted computations, where input is a read-only memory and only one (qu)bit can be computed on. We show that $n$-bit symmetric Boolean functions can be implemented exactly through the use of quantum signal processing as restricted space quantum computations using $O(n^2)$ gates, but some of them may only be evaluated with probability $1/2 + O(n/\sqrt{2}^n)$ by analogously defined classical computations. We experimentally demonstrate computations of $3$-, $4$-, $5$-, and $6$-bit symmetric Boolean functions by quantum circuits, leveraging custom two-qubit gates, with algorithmic success probability exceeding the best possible classically. This establishes and experimentally verifies a different kind of quantum advantage -- one where quantum scrap space is more valuable than analogous classical space -- and calls for an in-depth exploration of space-time tradeoffs in quantum circuits.

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Quantum Physics Emerging Technologies