Distinguishability Errors in Linear Optical Quantum Computing

Chris Sparrow

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference Abstract


Proposals for linear optical quantum computation (LOQC) rely on quantum interference between single photons which, when coupled with photon detection, provides a mechanism to generate photonic entanglement. However, ideal quantum interference between photons only occurs if the photons are completely indistinguishable in all degrees of freedom except the one being interfered. In practice, no photons will be perfectly indistinguishable and therefore it is important to understand how using partially-distinguishable photons will affect the quantum information within the linear optical quantum computer.

Here we describe how states of partially-distinguishable photons are transformed by linear-optical networks and measured by photon-counting detectors. In addition we show how to calculate the logical content of a given photonic state containing partially-distinguishable photons. Using a realistic model of single photon sources, we then apply these tools to calculate the resulting logical error rates on recent proposals for universal LOQC.
Understanding the connection between physical imperfections and logical errors is crucial in assessing the fault-tolerance prospects of a quantum computation platform. Our results will help inform error correction strategies and allow one to specify the necessary fabrication and operational tolerances required for scalability.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2016
EventPhoton 16 - University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom
Duration: 5 Sep 20168 Sep 2016


ConferencePhoton 16
CountryUnited Kingdom


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