A beginner’s guide to quantum computing and the eigenvalue problem in quantum chemistry

סמינר כימיה פיזיקלית ואנליטית

Lecturer: Idan Haritan, Schulich Faculty of Chemistry, group of Prof. Nimrod Moiseyev

21-21 Mar 2021 @ 12:30

Location: Join Zoom Meeting at

Nowadays, computers are an integral part of our lives. From smartphones to TVs and laptops, it is hard to imagine our lives without them. It seems that they can do almost anything. Yet, just as cars replaced horses and revolutionized the way we move from one place to another, quantum computers hold the potential to revolutionize the way we use computers. Scientists today believe quantum computers can solve computational problems that seem impossible to solve by a classical computer. Therefore, in the following years, quantum computers could have a major impact on the world and our lives inside it.

As their name may indicate, quantum computers stem from quantum mechanics: A field in science that describes the fundamental particles in our universe (atoms, molecules, protons, electrons and more). In practice, a quantum computer is a machine that stores and manipulates information by controlling the behavior of these particles. Therefore, while a classical computer uses bits to store information, a quantum computer relies on qubits (quantum bits).

In classical computers, a bit represents a logic binary state: 0 or 1.A qubit on the other hand, represents a two state quantum system, and as such it can be 0, 1 or any combination of both.

In this talk, I will present the fundamentals of quantum computing: quantum properties of qubits and quantum gates, alongside, I will define what are quantum algorithms, what are their strengths and what are their limitations.

As a final note, I will discuss the eigenvalue problem in quantum chemistry, and how we can attempt to solve it using a quantum computer.