Stanford EE

Robust Classical Shadow Tomography in Shallow Circuits

Yi-Zhuang You (University of California, San Diego)
McCullough 335

Abstract: Extracting information efficiently from quantum systems is a major component of quantum information processing tasks. Randomized measurements, or classical shadows, enable predicting many properties of arbitrary quantum states using few measurements. While random single qubit measurements are experimentally friendly and suitable for learning low-weight Pauli observables, they perform poorly for nonlocal observables. Prepending a shallow random quantum circuit before measurements maintains this experimental friendliness, but also has favorable sample complexities for observables beyond low-weight Paulis, including high-weight Paulis and global low-rank properties such as fidelity. However, in realistic scenarios, quantum noise accumulated with each additional layer of the shallow circuit biases the results. To address these challenges, we propose the robust shallow shadows protocol. Our protocol uses Bayesian inference to learn the experimentally relevant noise model and mitigate it in postprocessing. This mitigation introduces a bias-variance trade-off: correcting for noise-induced bias comes at the cost of a larger estimator variance. Despite this increased variance, as we demonstrate on a superconducting quantum processor, our protocol correctly recovers state properties such as expectation values, fidelity, and entanglement entropy, while maintaining a lower sample complexity compared to the random single qubit measurement scheme. We also theoretically analyze the effects of noise on sample complexity and show how the optimal choice of the shallow shadow depth varies with noise strength. This combined theoretical and experimental analysis positions the robust shallow shadow protocol as a scalable, robust, and sample-efficient protocol for characterizing quantum states on current quantum computing platforms.