Advancing the Wireless Spectral Frontier with Quantum-Enabled Computational Techniques (QENeTs)

Thursday, Sep 6, 2018

Researchers at NASA Ames Research Center/Universities Space Research Association and Professor Kyle Jamieson have a new NSF award at Princeton, details below:

Princeton award (Jamieson PI): https://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=1824357&HistoricalAwards=false 

NASA award: https://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward?AWD_ID=1824470&HistoricalAwards=false 

SpecEES: Collaborative Research: Advancing the Wireless Spectral Frontier with Quantum-Enabled Computational Techniques (QENeTs) 

In recent years, user demand for increasing amounts of wireless capacity continues to outpace supply. To meet this demand, significant progress has been made in designing new wireless technologies, but even higher-performance systems remain impractical largely because their techniques are extremely computationally demanding. For the best performance, these techniques generally require an amount of computation that increases at an exponential rate both with the number of users and with the data rate of each user. The base station's computational capacity is becoming the limiting factor on wireless capacity. Quantum-Enabled Computational Techniques (QENeTs) aims to transform the current research landscape by leveraging quantum computation to overcome previous computational limitations, enabling new levels of wireless network performance, with the eventual outcome of incorporating quantum computation into tomorrow's wireless cellular networking standards. In the context of advanced cellular technologies, QENeTs will contribute techniques to both improve network performance and enable co-existence of wireless local area networking technologies such as Wi-Fi in dense deployments.

The project will design a multitude of new communications receiver decoding algorithms that are amenable to execution on today's and tomorrow's quantum annealers, as well as the early prototypes of forthcoming quantum gate model computers. The QENeTs maximum-likelihood decoder problems are the first application of quantum computing to wireless networks, and the first time that such real-world problems have been attempted in quantum computers in their full complexity. These methods will be tested on real hardware and benchmarked against the best known classical approaches. In addition to spectral efficiency, the project will also consider how quantum-enabled techniques can improve the energy efficiency of massive multiple-input/multiple-output (MIMO) algorithms, both on the mobile handset where battery life is key, as well as on the infrastructure side, where the ability to power-down base stations reaps significant cost savings benefits for the network operator. The QENeTs project will contribute to the governmental and industrial research environments, as the Universities Space Research Association (USRA), one of the collaborating institutions, has entered into a joint Space Act Agreement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Google to conduct collaborative research on the benefits of quantum computing for a range of challenging applications. QENeTs will further support graduate student education through summer internship experiences at USRA and the NASA Ames Research Center.