2021 Medal Winners | francais

The 2021 CAP-CRM Prize in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics

is awarded to

Robert Raussendorf

"I feel very honoured and delighted to receive the 2021 CAP-CRM prize in theoretical and mathematical physics. I also view it as a recognition of the fact that quantum computation needs fundamental research." winner citation

The Canadian Association of Physicists (CAP) and the Centre de recherches mathématiques (CRM) are pleased to announce that the 2021 CAP-CRM Prize in Theoretical and Mathematical Physics is awarded to Robert Raussendorf, University of British Columbia, to recognize his eminent contributions to the theory of quantum computing, including groundbreaking work on measurement-based or "one way" quantum computing, fault-tolerant quantum computing, and computationally universal quantum phases of matter. announcement

Prof. Raussendorf has made multiple fundamental contributions to the theory of quantum computation. He proposed a new technique, the "one-way" or measurement-based quantum computer, which is considered one of the few viable paths for physical quantum computers. He developed a scheme for fault-tolerant quantum computing, and identified a computationally universal phase of quantum matter.

Measurement-based quantum computation involves preparing an entangled many-qubit resource state, and then carrying out local measurements specified by the desired calculation. This proposal launched numerous experimental proofs of principle and is currently driving the efforts of at least two companies attempting to build functional quantum computers.

To make a closer connection to practical circuits, Prof. Raussendorf studied cluster states, and showed that they could be realized in a two-dimensional array using only local and nearest-neighbour measurements. Furthermore, they can be configured to allow fault-tolerant quantum computation. This idea is considered one of the most promising approaches to realistic large-scale fault-tolerant quantum computing.

Recently, Robert has explored computational phases of quantum matter, harnessing certain topological phases for computation. He has identified a two-dimensional spin-system phase which is computationally universal. He has proposed a classical simulation technique for finite-dimensional systems with magic states on qubits. In a related work, he has shown that a classical statistical system, and manipulations of that system, can be used to simulate a universal set of quantum operations. This close tie between quantum computations and classical statistics is generating significant excitement.

Dr. Raussendorf leads the Quantum Computing Grand Challenge funded by the Stewart Blusson Quantum Matter Institute at the University of British Columbia. nominator citation

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