Perturbation theory in quantum mechanics studies how quantum systems interact with their environmental perturbations. Harmonic perturbation is a rare special case of time-dependent perturbations in which exact analysis exists. Some important technology advances, such as masers, lasers, nuclear magnetic resonance, etc., originated from it. Here we add quantum computation to this list with a theoretical demonstration. Based on harmonic perturbation, a quantum mechanical algorithm is devised to search the ground state of a given Hamiltonian. The intrinsic complexity of the algorithm is continuous and parametric in both time T and energy E. More precisely, the probability of locating a search target of a Hamiltonian in N-dimensional vector space is shown to be 1/(1 + c N E−2T−2) for some constant c. This result is optimal. As harmonic perturbation provides a different computation mechanism, the algorithm may suggest new directions in realizing quantum computers.
Quantum Information Processing – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 21, 2007
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