The European Physical Journal Special Topics

, Volume 224, Issue 1, pp 111–129

Reexamining classical and quantum models for the D-Wave One processor

The role of excited states and ground state degeneracy

DOI: 10.1140/epjst/e2015-02346-0

Cite this article as:
Albash, T., Rønnow, T., Troyer, M. et al. Eur. Phys. J. Spec. Top. (2015) 224: 111. doi:10.1140/epjst/e2015-02346-0
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Quantum Annealing: The Fastest Route to Quantum Computation?


We revisit the evidence for quantum annealing in the D-Wave One device (DW1) based on the study of random Ising instances. Using the probability distributions of finding the ground states of such instances, previous work found agreement with both simulated quantum annealing (SQA) and a classical rotor model. Thus the DW1 ground state success probabilities are consistent with both models, and a different measure is needed to distinguish the data and the models. Here we consider measures that account for ground state degeneracy and the distributions of excited states, and present evidence that for these new measures neither SQA nor the classical rotor model correlate perfectly with the DW1 experiments. We thus provide evidence that SQA and the classical rotor model, both of which are classically efficient algorithms, do not satisfactorily explain all the DW1 data. A complete model for the DW1 remains an open problem. Using the same criteria we find that, on the other hand, SQA and the classical rotor model correlate closely with each other. To explain this we show that the rotor model can be derived as the semiclassical limit of the spin-coherent states path integral. We also find differences in which set of ground states is found by each method, though this feature is sensitive to calibration errors of the DW1 device and to simulation parameters.

Copyright information

© EDP Sciences and Springer 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Albash
    • 1
    • 2
  • T.F. Rønnow
    • 3
  • M. Troyer
    • 3
  • D.A. Lidar
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Physics and AstronomyUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Center for Quantum Information Science & Technology, University of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  3. 3.Theoretische Physik, ETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland
  4. 4.Department of ChemistryUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  5. 5.Department of Electrical EngineeringUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

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