We present a framework that combines the adjoint state method together with reverse-time back-propagation to solve otherwise prohibitively large open-system quantum control problems.Our approach enables the optimization of arbitrary cost functions with fully general controls applied on large open quantum systems described by a Lindblad master equation. It is scalable, computationally efficient, and has a low memory footprint. We apply this framework to optimize two inherently dissipative operations in superconducting qubits which lag behind in terms of fidelity and duration compared to other unitary operations: the dispersive readout and all-microwave reset of a transmon qubit. Our results show that, given a fixed set of system parameters, shaping the control pulses can yield 2x improvements in the fidelity and duration for both of these operations compared to standard strategies. Our approach can readily be applied to optimize quantum controls in a vast range of applications such as reservoir engineering, autonomous quantum error correction, and leakage-reduction units.

We provide a systematic method for constructing effective dispersive Lindblad master equations to describe weakly-anharmonic superconducting circuits coupled by a generic dissipationlessnonreciprocal linear system, with effective coupling parameters and decay rates written in terms of the immittance parameters characterizing the coupler. This article extends the foundational work of Solgun et al. (2019) for linear reciprocal couplers described by an impedance response. Here, we expand the existing toolbox to incorporate nonreciprocal elements, account for direct stray coupling between immittance ports, circumvent potential singularities, and include dissipative interactions arising from interaction with a common bath. We illustrate the use of our results with a circuit of weakly-anharmonic Josephson junctions coupled to a multiport nonreciprocal environment and a dissipative port. The results obtained here can be used for the design of complex superconducting quantum processors with non-trivial routing of quantum information, as well as analog quantum simulators of condensed matter systems.

Quantum computers will require quantum error correction to reach the low error rates necessary for solving problems that surpass the capabilities of conventional computers. One of thedominant errors limiting the performance of quantum error correction codes across multiple technology platforms is leakage out of the computational subspace arising from the multi-level structure of qubit implementations. Here, we present a resource-efficient universal leakage reduction unit for superconducting qubits using parametric flux modulation. This operation removes leakage down to our measurement accuracy of 7⋅10−4 in approximately 50ns with a low error of 2.5(1)⋅10−3 on the computational subspace, thereby reaching durations and fidelities comparable to those of single-qubit gates. We demonstrate that using the leakage reduction unit in repeated weight-two stabilizer measurements reduces the total number of detected errors in a scalable fashion to close to what can be achieved using leakage-rejection methods which do not scale. Our approach does neither require additional control electronics nor on-chip components and is applicable to both auxiliary and data qubits. These benefits make our method particularly attractive for mitigating leakage in large-scale quantum error correction circuits, a crucial requirement for the practical implementation of fault-tolerant quantum computation.

The performance of a wide range of quantum computing algorithms and protocols depends critically on the fidelity and speed of the employed qubit readout. Examples include gate sequencesbenefiting from mid-circuit, real-time, measurement-based feedback, such as qubit initialization, entanglement generation, teleportation, and perhaps most importantly, quantum error correction. A prominent and widely-used readout approach is based on the dispersive interaction of a superconducting qubit strongly coupled to a large-bandwidth readout resonator, frequently combined with a dedicated or shared Purcell filter protecting qubits from decay. By dynamically reducing the qubit-resonator detuning and thus increasing the dispersive shift, we demonstrate a beyond-state-of-the-art two-state-readout error of only 0.25% in 100 ns integration time. Maintaining low readout-drive strength, we nearly quadruple the signal-to-noise ratio of the readout by doubling the readout mode linewidth, which we quantify by considering the hybridization of the readout-resonator and its dedicated Purcell-filter. We find excellent agreement between our experimental data and our theoretical model. The presented results are expected to further boost the performance of new and existing algorithms and protocols critically depending on high-fidelity, fast, mid-circuit measurements.

Time-dependent drives play a crucial role in quantum computing efforts with circuit quantum electrodynamics. They enable single-qubit control, entangling logical operations, as wellas qubit readout. However, their presence can lead to deleterious effects such as large ac-Stark shifts and unwanted qubit transitions ultimately reflected into reduced control or readout fidelities. Qubit cloaking was introduced in Lledó, Dassonneville, et al. [arXiv:2022.05758] to temporarily decouple the qubit from the coherent photon population of a driven cavity, allowing for the application of arbitrary displacements to the cavity field while avoiding the deleterious effects on the qubit. For qubit readout, cloaking permits to prearm the cavity with an, in principle, arbitrarily large number of photons, in anticipation to the qubit-state-dependent evolution of the cavity field, allowing for improved readout strategies. Here we take a closer look at two of them. First, arm-and-release readout, introduced together with qubit cloaking, where after arming the cavity the cloaking mechanism is released and the cavity field evolves under the application of a constant drive amplitude. Second, an arm-and-longitudinal readout scheme, where the cavity drive amplitude is slowly modulated after the release. We show that the two schemes complement each other, offering an improvement over the standard dispersive readout for any values of the dispersive interaction and cavity decay rate, as well as any target measurement integration time. Our results provide a recommendation for improving qubit readout without changes to the standard circuit QED architecture.

Cavity quantum electrodynamics (QED) uses a cavity to engineer the mode structure of the vacuum electromagnetic field such as to enhance the interaction between light and matter. Exploitingthese ideas in solid-state systems has lead to circuit QED which has emerged as a valuable tool to explore the rich physics of quantum optics and as a platform for quantum computation. Here we introduce a simple approach to further engineer the light-matter interaction in a driven cavity by controllably decoupling a qubit from the cavity’s photon population, effectively cloaking the qubit from the cavity. This is realized by driving the qubit with an external tone tailored to destructively interfere with the cavity field, leaving the qubit to interact with a cavity which appears to be in the vacuum state. Our experiment demonstrates how qubit cloaking can be exploited to cancel ac-Stark shift and measurement-induced dephasing, and to accelerate qubit readout.

We propose to couple the flux degree of freedom of one mode with the charge degree of freedom of a second mode in a hybrid superconducting-semiconducting architecture. Nonreciprocitycan arise in this architecture in the presence of external static magnetic fields alone. We leverage this property to engineer a passive on-chip gyrator, the fundamental two-port nonreciprocal device which can be used to build other nonreciprocal devices such as circulators. We analytically and numerically investigate how the nonlinearity of the interaction, circuit disorder and parasitic couplings affect the scattering response of the gyrator.

We introduce a circuit-QED architecture combining fixed-frequency qubits and microwave-driven couplers. In the appropriate frame, the drive parameters appear as tunable knobs enablingselective two-qubit coupling and coherent-error suppression. We moreover introduce a set of controlled-phase gates based on drive-amplitude and drive-frequency modulation. We develop a theoretical framework based on Floquet theory to model microwave-activated interactions with time-dependent drive parameters, which we also use for pulse shaping. We perform numerical simulations of the gate fidelity for realistic circuit parameters, and discuss the impact of drive-induced decoherence. We estimate average gate fidelities beyond 99.9% for all-microwave controlled-phase operations with gate times in the range 50−120ns. These two-qubit gates can operate over a large drive-frequency bandwidth and in a broad range of circuit parameters, thereby improving extensibility. We address the frequency allocation problem for this architecture using perturbation theory, demonstrating that qubit, coupler and drive frequencies can be chosen such that undesired static and driven interactions remain bounded in a multi-qubit device. Our numerical methods are useful for describing the time-evolution of driven systems in the adiabatic limit, and are applicable to a wide variety of circuit-QED setups.

Qubit measurement and control in circuit QED rely on microwave drives, with higher drive amplitudes ideally leading to faster processes. However, degradation in qubit coherence timeand readout fidelity has been observed even under moderate drive amplitudes corresponding to few photons populating the measurement resonator. Here, we numerically explore the dynamics of a driven transmon-resonator system under strong and nearly resonant measurement drives, and find clear signatures of transmon ionization where the qubit escapes out of its cosine potential. Using a semiclassical model, we interpret this ionization as resulting from resonances occurring at specific resonator photon populations. We find that the photon populations at which these spurious transitions occur are strongly parameter dependent and that they can occur at low resonator photon population, something which may explain the experimentally observed degradation in measurement fidelity.

Quantum computers hold the promise of solving computational problems which are intractable using conventional methods. For fault-tolerant operation quantum computers must correct errorsoccurring due to unavoidable decoherence and limited control accuracy. Here, we demonstrate quantum error correction using the surface code, which is known for its exceptionally high tolerance to errors. Using 17 physical qubits in a superconducting circuit we encode quantum information in a distance-three logical qubit building up on recent distance-two error detection experiments. In an error correction cycle taking only 1.1μs, we demonstrate the preservation of four cardinal states of the logical qubit. Repeatedly executing the cycle, we measure and decode both bit- and phase-flip error syndromes using a minimum-weight perfect-matching algorithm in an error-model-free approach and apply corrections in postprocessing. We find a low error probability of 3% per cycle when rejecting experimental runs in which leakage is detected. The measured characteristics of our device agree well with a numerical model. Our demonstration of repeated, fast and high-performance quantum error correction cycles, together with recent advances in ion traps, support our understanding that fault-tolerant quantum computation will be practically realizable.