Computing Electronic Correlation Energies using Linear Depth Quantum Circuits

Chong Hian Chee, Adrian M. Mak, Daniel Leykam, Dimitris G. Angelakis

arXiv:2207.03949

Efficient computation of molecular energies is an exciting application of quantum computers, but current noisy intermediate-scale quantum (NISQ) devices can only execute shallow circuits, limiting existing quantum algorithms to small molecules. Here we demonstrate a variational NISQ-friendly algorithm for computing electronic correlation energies perturbatively, trading deep circuits in exchange for more shallow circuits with depth linear in the number of qubits. We tested the algorithm on several small molecules, both with classical simulations including noise models and on cloud quantum processors, showing that it not only reproduces the equilibrium molecular energies but it also captures the perturbative electronic correlation effects at longer bond distances. As fidelities of quantum processors continue to improve our algorithm will enable the study of larger molecules compared to existing approaches with higher-order polynomial circuit depth.