Optimal Scaling Quantum Linear Systems Solver via Discrete Adiabatic Theorem

Pedro C. S. Costa
Dong An
Yuval Sanders
Yuan Su
Dominic W. Berry
PRX Quantum, 3(2022), pp. 040303


Recently, several approaches to solving linear systems on a quantum computer have been formulated in terms of the quantum adiabatic theorem for a continuously varying Hamiltonian. Such approaches enabled near-linear scaling in the condition number $\kappa$ of the linear system, without requiring a complicated variable-time amplitude amplification procedure. However, the most efficient of those procedures is still asymptotically sub-optimal by a factor of $\log(\kappa)$. Here, we prove a rigorous form of the adiabatic theorem that bounds the error in terms of the spectral gap for intrinsically discrete time evolutions. We use this discrete adiabatic theorem to develop a quantum algorithm for solving linear systems that is asymptotically optimal, in the sense that the complexity is strictly linear in $\kappa$, matching a known lower bound on the complexity. Our $\mathcal{O}(\kappa\log(1/\epsilon))$ complexity is also optimal in terms of the combined scaling in $\kappa$ and the precision $\epsilon$. Compared to existing suboptimal methods, our algorithm is simpler and easier to implement. Moreover, we determine the constant factors in the algorithm, which would be suitable for determining the complexity in terms of gate counts for specific applications.

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