Quantum Algorithms for Collider Physics
As particle physics experiments continue to stretch the limits of classical computation, it is natural to ask about the potential future role of quantum computers. In this talk, I discuss the potential relevance of quantum algorithms for collider physics. I present a proof-of-concept study for “thrust”, a well-known collider observable that has O(N^3) runtime for a collision involving N final-state particles. Thrust is a particularly interesting observable in this context, since it has two dual formulations, one which naturally maps to quantum annealing and one which naturally maps to Grover search. The key lesson from this study is that the computational overhead from loading classical data into a quantum computer must be carefully accounted for when assessing the potential gains from quantum algorithms.