Building and programming a quantum computer

TRA105 Advanced TRACKS project course (7.5 credits)

Jump to example project themes.

Background

Chalmers is now building a quantum computer and you can contribute to this development! Quantum computers are machines first envisioned by Richard Feynman to solve numerical and simulation problems that would take millennia even with the fastest supercomputers. Quantum algorithms make use of spooky quantum phenomena such as superposition and entanglement to reach this speed-up, and this is why blue chip companies, such as Google, Microsoft and IBM and several research institutes are now investing in quantum computation. This is an interdisciplinary effort spanning from quantum hardware design, nanofabrication, microwave engineering to algorithm development and numerical simulations. We call this the full stack quantum computation, which connects the special quantum hardware enclosed at very low temperatures close to the absolute zero point all the way to the user interface. We seek for talented students who are interested in learning about this emerging field and want to be involved in the forefront of ongoing research activities.

General information

The course will span from September to December in 2021. First, a series of lectures will provide you with the background information on quantum mechanics, quantum algorithms and hardware. The individual technical projects will then span for the rest of the semester. For the general learning objectives, see TRA105 on the student portal.

Course project work

You will have the opportunity to participate in a project directly relating to ongoing research activities on quantum nanoscience and technology at the Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2) and the Wallenberg Centre for Quantum Technology (WACQT) at Chalmers. You will work in small project teams, which, together with the lecturers, formulate relevant technical questions at different levels of the quantum computing stack spanning from cryogenic hardware to quantum algorithms. The technical work will be regularly discussed over the course period and will conclude with a final written report and presentation.

Prerequisites

We welcome master students from all educational programs at Chalmers with sufficient mathematical and physics background, which includes linear algebra and electrodynamics. Some experience in programming and solid state physics is beneficial. Individual projects may benefit from additional knowledge for example in computer algorithms, statistical mechanics, chemistry, signal processing or electronic circuit design.

Teachers

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How to apply

If you are interested, send a short motivation letter where you tell us about your background and the type of project you are interested in! Please also include your course transcripts. Send the application material to by 15th June 2021. We will select up to 20 applicants and at least 5 students have to sign up for the course to start.

Example project themes

Below you find a few possible project titles with keywords. The actual projects will always be tailored by the students and the teachers, and we always welcome new suggestions!

RF module development for quantum technologies

Microwave engineering, PCB design, finite element modeling and simulations.

Automated calibration and tune-up of qubit gates

Measurement and control, scripting, interfacing with the software stack.

Cryogenic hardware design

Design of quantum device holder, optimization of thermalization properties. Shielding and microwave filter design for a given frequency band.

Nanofabrication for quantum devices

Thin film fabrication in a clean room environment, superconducting material and process optimization.

Digital signal processing

Real-time qubit feedback, FPGA development.

Optimal control for quantum information processing

Optimize control pulses to achieve certain gates based on an abstract model of the quantum processing unit (QPU). Verify the algorithm by applying the control pulses to an actual QPU.