Four CQuIC Faculty Receive EAGER Awards

EArly-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) are awarded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) each year to support exploratory work in its early stages on untested, but potentially transformative, research ideas or approaches. This work may be considered especially “high risk-high payoff” in the sense that it, for example, involves radically different approaches, applies new expertise, or engages novel disciplinary or interdisciplinary perspectives.

CQuIC is proud to announce that this year, four CQuIC faculty received EAGER awards. Professors Akimasa Miyake, Elizabeth Crosson, and Tameem Albash have been awarded grants under the Quantum Algorithm Challenge, the largest number of such grants awarded to any institution this year.  Professor  F. Elohim Becerra Chavez was awarded an EAGER grant from the Division of Molecular and Cellular Biology, jointly with Prof. Keith Lidke of the Department of Physics & Astronomy and Prof. Diane Lidke of the Department of Pathology in the School of Medicine.  The work of the faculty and their research groups funded by the EAGER awards will enhance other current and future projects in quantum information science conducted at CQuIC and collaboratively across campus.

With the aid of NSF EAGER award, Miyake group aims to apply explicitly correlated electronic structure theory in quantum chemistry to quantum algorithms and simulation. This new project is also synergetic with ongoing NSF-funded STAQ quantum computing project, which co-designs state-of-the-art ion-trap quantum computers for practical applications.

Crosson’s project investigates the connection between physical thermalization – the process by which a physical quantum system comes into thermal equilibrium with its environment – and the behavior and convergence of quantum algorithms for simulating thermal states.   Specifically, the project investigates the quantum Metropolis algorithm, which is a quantum algorithm that directly generalizes one of the most successful 20th century paradigms for simulating classical statistical physics.   By paralleling developments that occurred in the corresponding classical algorithm, this project seeks to determine general conditions which imply that a quantum computer can efficiently simulate quantum thermal properties.

The research goal of the Albash group is to use the EAGER award to study the viability of hybrid quantum-classical algorithms to deliver a quantum advantage for approximating the ground state of many-body non-stoquastic Hamiltonians, a class of quantum Hamiltonians that describes many relevant model systems.  This project will make this assessment by combining lessons from spin-glass theory and a side-by-side comparison of the computational cost of hybrid quantum-classical variational algorithms and state-of-the-art classical algorithms using well-defined problem classes of non-stoquastic Hamiltonians of varying difficulty. The project highlights the multi-disciplinary nature of quantum computing and will train students to have a diverse toolbox to tackle emerging challenges in the field.

The collaboration among the groups of Becerra, K. Lidke, and D. Lidke is an interdisciplinary effort in cell biology and biophysics; single-molecule super-resolution microscopy; and quantum optical measurements. This work investigates the use of quantum-enhanced measurements for approaching the physical limits in precision in localization to study protein-protein interactions and determine protein organization during cellular signaling. Such knowledge will provide a fundamental understanding of how changes in membrane protein organization govern cellular outcome, both in normal and diseased states.


CQuIC Welcomes Milad Marvian to CQuIC Faculty

CQuIC welcomes Assistant Professor Milad Marvian, of UNM Electrical and Computer Engineering, as a CQuIC Faculty.  He is joining UNM on August 1, 2020 and we are excited that his experience will add to the breadth of CQuIC research.

Professor Marvian has worked on various aspects of quantum computing and quantum information, including quantum error correction and mitigation, adiabatic quantum computation, and quantum Hamiltonian complexity.  Before joining UNM, he was a postdoctoral associate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California in 2018.

Professor Marvian looks forward to interactions and collaborations with the members of CQuIC.


CQuIC receives award in new NSF Quantum Leaps Challenge Institute

(Artist’s rendition of quantum entanglement. Credit: Nicolle R. Fuller/NSF)

CQuIC is excited to be part of the newly created center entitled “Quantum Systems through Entangled Science and Engineering (Q-SEnSE)” one of three Quantum Leap Challenge Institutes (QLCI) inaugurated by the National Science Foundation.  

These QLCI are central to advancing the United States National Quantum Initiative (NQI).  Q-SEnSE, led by the Cubit quantum initiative at the University of Colorado Boulder will focus on the development of next generations quantum sensors and metrology through a series of “grand challenges.”  They include how exotic quantum phenomena, such as quantum entanglement, will advance new frontiers in measurement science; how quantum sensing can help researchers to discover new fundamental physics; and how researchers can turn those advancements into real-world technologies.  The Q-SEnSE team includes researchers from seven Universities:  CU Boulder, Delaware, Harvard, MIT, Oregon, Stanford, & UNM as well as four National Laboratories:  Los Alamos, MIT-Lincoln Labs, NIST, & Sandia.   

CQuIC researchers will pursue fundamental research to understand how one can harness quantum complexity for metrological advantage and apply this in next-generation experimental platforms.  CQuIC will also play a central role in Quantum Information Science (QIS) education and workforce development.  CQuIC, through Q-SEnSE, and the other NSF Quantum Leap Challenge Institutes will tackle the goals of the NQI head on: addressing basic research in QIS, expanding the number of researchers, educators and students with training in QIS and promoting the development and inclusion of multidisciplinary curriculum and research opportunities for QIS at the undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral level. 

** (Artist’s rendition of quantum entanglement. Credit: Nicolle R. Fuller/NSF)

Postdoc Spotlight: Dr. Pablo Poggi, Premio Juan José Giambiagi

The CQuIC community offers congratulations to Pablo for his recognized achievement for his thesis work and continued contributions to research in quantum information science.

In November 2019, Dr. Pablo Poggi was named the honored recipient of the 2019 Juan José Giambiagi Award for the best Theoretical Thesis by the Physics Association of Argentina to the thesis entitled “Coherent control of quantum systems” carried out by Dr. Poggi under the supervision of the Drs. Diego Wisniacki and Fernando Lombardo.  To publicly celebrate the award, Pablo was to present a lecture at the National Physics Conference in the city of Córdoba in September 2020. 

In his prized thesis, Dr. Poggi’s work focused on an active area of research associated with numerous technological applications such as control of chemical reactions, charge transport in nanostructures, metrology, and quantum information.   The jury stated, “the quality of the results obtained in this Thesis constitute an important contribution to scientific knowledge regarding the control of quantum systems. These results together with the increasing capacity of manipulation of these systems open the doors to numerous technological applications in diverse fields.”  Pablo continues to collaborate with his previous group in topics related to the study of open quantum systems.   

Dr. Poggi credits some of the ideas that contributed to the recent Physical Review Letters publication authored in collaboration with CQuIC research partners at the University of Arizona to work he conducted while developing his thesis (broadly speaking).    

[2020] N. K. Lysne, K. W. Kuper, P. M. Poggi, I. H. Deutsch, and P. S. Jessen, “A small, highly accurate quantum processor for intermediate-depth quantum simulations”Physical Review Letters124, 230501 (2020).

  Dr. Pablo Poggi joined CQuIC in January 2018 after completing his PhD work at the University of Buenos Aires.  Pablo commented about the contribution of his thesis work to his ongoing research, “For me, the thing I’m most grateful about my PhD is that I was given the possibility and freedom to learn about different topics, and I was encouraged by my advisors to do so. It was really thanks to that, that I was able to come to CQuIC and engage with new and diverse projects from the beginning.”