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.

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.

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.

Properties of time-periodic Hamiltonians can be exploited to increase the dephasing time of qubits and to design protected one and two-qubit gates. Recently, Huang et al. [Phys. Rev.Applied 15, 034065 (2021)] have shown that time-dependent Floquet states offer a manifold of working points with dynamical protection larger than the few usual static sweet spots. Here, we use the framework of many-mode Floquet theory to describe approaches to robustly control Floquet qubits in the presence of multiple drive tones. Following the same approach, we introduce a longitudinal readout protocol to measure the Floquet qubit without the need of first adiabatically mapping back the Floquet states to the static qubit states, which results in a significant speedup in the measurement time of the Floquet qubit. The analytical approach developed here can be applied to any Hamiltonian involving a small number of distinct drive tones, typically the study of standard parametric gates for qubits outside of the rotating-wave approximation.

The controls enacting logical operations on quantum systems are described by time-dependent Hamiltonians that often include rapid oscillations. In order to accurately capture the resultingtime dynamics in numerical simulations, a very small integration time step is required, which can severely impact the simulation run-time. Here, we introduce a semi-analytic method based on the Dyson expansion that allows us to time-evolve driven quantum systems much faster than standard numerical integrators. This solver, which we name Dysolve, efficiently captures the effect of the highly oscillatory terms in the system Hamiltonian, significantly reducing the simulation’s run time as well as its sensitivity to the time-step size. Furthermore, this solver provides the exact derivative of the time-evolution operator with respect to the drive amplitudes. This key feature allows for optimal control in the limit of strong drives and goes beyond common pulse-optimization approaches that rely on rotating-wave approximations. As an illustration of our method, we show results of the optimization of a two-qubit gate using transmon qubits in the circuit QED architecture.