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School of Engineering’s Marvian wins NSF CAREER Award

March 23, 2023 - by Kim Delker

Milad Marvian, an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a member of the Center for Quantum Information and Control (CQuIC) at The University of New Mexico, has received a National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award.

photo: Milad Marvian
Milad Marvian

The award is NSF’s most prestigious award in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of scholar-teacher, through outstanding research, excellent education, and the integration of research and education.

Marvian’s five-year project, titled “Design and Analysis of Low-Overhead Fault-Tolerant Quantum Circuits,” explores the minimum requirements for reliable quantum computation and also aims to develop low-overhead quantum error correction and fault-tolerant schemes.

“Quantum computing is fundamentally different from classical computing in that it utilizes quantum mechanical effects to perform computation,” he said.

He said the shift in the paradigm of computing provides quantum computers with the potential to offer a substantial advantage compared to classical computers for certain high-impact computational tasks.

“However, quantum systems are extremely susceptible to noise, which can substantially reduce their performance. Current methods to protect quantum information from the noise require a lot of overhead and the fundamental limits of the required resources are less understood,” he said.

Marvian said he and his team will develop mathematical models that will help them to determine these fundamental limits and also develop optimized constructions of quantum devices, protecting key fault-tolerant quantum operations. The project will help to lower the hardware requirements to build reliable quantum processors capable of accurate, large-scale quantum computation.

“My hope is at the end of this project, we will have a better understanding of limits of protecting quantum computers against noise, making them more efficient, affordable and ultimately result in reducing the barriers to building practical quantum processors,” he said.

Both graduate students and undergraduates will be part of this project.

Marvian said he is excited and appreciative of this opportunity provided by NSF, which enables him to follow his vision in this research direction.

Marvian joined UNM in fall 2020 as a faculty member in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and CQuIC. Before coming to UNM, he was a postdoctoral researcher at MIT. He said that he was attracted to UNM because it has been a leader in quantum information science.

“UNM has been one of the pioneers in quantum information science, with major contributions to research and education for over 25 years,” he said.