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A Parallel Quantum Computer Simulator

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Technical Report

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Naval Postgraduate School Monterey United States

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The unique principles of quantum mechanics may one day enable computers to perform operations that would be impossible on a classical computer. Although no one knows whether it will be possible to build a large-scale, functional, and stable quantum computer, researchers can study quantum-mechanical systems and develop algorithms and circuits by simulating quantum systems in software. Performance and memory bottlenecks prevent most current quantum computer simulators from being able to simulate quantum systems that are large enough to be useful. In this thesis, we develop a matrix-free sequential quantum computer simulator to vastly improve both time and memory performance of sequential code on a single processor. Next, we distribute the matrix-free algorithm over multiple parallel processors using the Message Passing Interface in order to simulate quantum systems that are too large to reside wholly within the memory of a single processor. Finally, we simulate various quantum circuits using the Hamming high-performance computing cluster in order to conduct algorithmic analysis.

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