Improved Success Probability with Greater Circuit Depth for the Quantum Approximate Optimization Algorithm
Present-day, noisy, small or intermediate-scale quantum processors—although far from fault tolerant—support the execution of heuristic quantum algorithms, which might enable a quantum advantage, for example, when applied to combinatorial optimization problems. On small-scale quantum processors, validations of such algorithms serve as important technology demonstrators. We implement the quantum approximate optimization algorithm on our hardware platform, consisting of two superconducting transmon qubits and one parametrically modulated coupler. We solve small instances of the NP (nondeterministic polynomial time)-complete exact-cover problem, with 96.6% success probability, by iterating the algorithm up to level two.