SC20 Proceedings

The International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage, and Analysis

Experimental Evaluation of NISQ Quantum Computers: Error Measurement, Characterization, and Implications

Authors: Tirthak Patel, Abhay Potharaju, Baolin Li, Rohan Basu Roy, and Devesh Tiwari (Northeastern University)

Abstract: Noisy Intermediate-Scale Quantum (NISQ) computers are being increasingly used for executing early-stage quantum programs to establish the practical realizability of existing quantum algorithms. These quantum programs have uses cases in the realm of high-performance computing ranging from molecular chemistry and physics simulations to addressing NP-complete optimization problems. However, NISQ devices are prone to multiple types of errors, which affect the fidelity and reproducibility of the program execution. As the technology is still primitive, our understanding of these quantum machines and their error characteristics is limited. To bridge that understanding gap, this is the first work to provide a systematic and rich experimental evaluation of IBM Quantum Experience (QX) quantum computers of different scales and topologies. Our experimental evaluation uncovers multiple important and interesting aspects of benchmarking and evaluating quantum program on NISQ machines. We have open-sourced our experimental framework and dataset to help accelerate the evaluation of quantum computing systems.

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