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Alibaba Says Its New “Tai Zhang” Is the World’s Most Powerful Quantum Circuit Simulator

Yaoyun Shi's Team at the Aliyun Quantum Laboratory (AQL) today announced that they have developed the world's most powerful quantum circuit simulator: “Tai Zhang.”

Yaoyun Shi’s Team at the Aliyun Quantum Laboratory (AQL) today announced that they have developed the world’s most powerful quantum circuit simulator: “Tai Zhang.”

Supported by the Alibaba Group’s Data Infrastructure and Search Technology Division, Tai Zhang successfully simulated 81 (9×9) qubits with 40 layers on the benchmark Google Random Quantum Circuit, surpassing the previous best of 49 qubits on the same depth of 40 layers achieved by a powerful Google quantum circuit simulator.

Tai Zhang’s innovative algorithm has minimal communication overhead, which makes it particularly suitable for exploiting the advantages of distributed computing platforms’ online clusters. It can simulate quantum circuits of size 8x8x40 in 2 minutes using just a small portion (~14%) of the cluster, which was previously beyond the capabilities of supercomputers.

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Comparison of Alibaba’s “Tai Zhang” simulator and other mainstream simulators on Google’s Random Quantum Circuit

In a typical quantum circuit simulation scheme, it is necessary to store the full amplitude of the quantum state and simultaneously simulate quantum operations on the massive amount of data. This method requires the constant exchange of data among numerous computing nodes, resulting in considerable communication overhead. Therefore, such simulation tasks have previously been performed on supercomputers. The AQL team invented a simple yet effective method to decompose the entire simulation task and then distribute subtasks to different computing nodes in a balanced manner.

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Random Quantum Circuit size simulated by Tai Zhang (black) versus Google hardware (red)

The research results were submitted to arXiv as “Classical Simulation of Intermediate-Size Quantum Circuits.”

The Aliyun Quantum Laboratory was launched in 2017. One of the world’s top quantum scientists, Yaoyun Shi is AQL Founding Director and Chief Scientist of Quantum Technologies. Earlier this year, Mario Szegedy, a Hungarian-American computer scientist and Gödel Prize twice, also joined the lab.


Author: Mos Zhang| Editor: Tony Peng, Michael Sarazen

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