A group photo of the people in NordSTAR involved in Quantum computing activities. Back row from left: Professor Pedro Lind, Professor Sergiy Denysov, Chief Research Scientist Ahmed Elmokashfi and Professor Stefano Nichele. Front row from left: Shailendra Bhandri, Sebastian Overskott, Heine Aabø, Kristian Wold and Parissa Amin.

Young researchers are joining quantum activities

While helping in the process of bringing the two first quantum computers in Norway to the AI lab, NordSTAR started a series of research activities in the context of quantum computing and artificial intelligence.

Quantum computing is one of the several developing technologies that explore more sustainable alternatives to conventional computer systems. 

If properly developed and established, quantum information technologies may enable us to perform complex algorithms faster than nowadays, even if it is set to use one of the growing big data sources. For these reasons, NordSTAR started in its first year a series of interdisciplinary projects in quantum computing.

Watch this video for more information on this (youtube.com)

First PhD fellow in Quantum Computing

Kristian Wold is NordSTAR’s first PhD fellow in quantum computing. He will be working within our research area of Quantum Artificial Intelligence, supervised by Professor Sergiy Denysov. 

In his project, he will explore possible ways to optimize quantum circuits and implement algorithms of digital quantum computing. This will be done by using recent methods in machine learning and reinforcement learning.

The challenges of upgrading networks 

Our research assistant, Heine Aabø, will be studying the challenges that may occur when we upgrade from conventional computer networks to the networks of quantum computers. 

This project is at the interface between our two research areas, Quantum AI and Security, Safety and Reliability. The research is being supervised by both Professor Sergiy Denysov and Chief Research Scientist Ahmed Elmokashfi. 

Master students studying entanglement

Another interdisciplinary project bridges quantum computing with bio-inspired computational systems, which is another research area in the field of unconventional computing.

Three master students from the Applied Computer and Information Technology (ACIT) program will be studying the problem of deriving so-called entangled states on quantum computers by using bio-inspired artificial intelligence algorithms. 

Entanglement is an important feature of quantum computing because it is the fuel for the quantum processing of information. There is no straightforward way to prepare highly entangled states on quantum computers today. 

The team of students that are participating in this project is Ioannis Adamopoulos, Sebastian Overskott, and Shailendra Bhandari. They are supervised by Professor Sergiy Denysov and Professor Stefano Nichele. 

The new members in NordSTAR with the first quantum computer in Norway. From top left: Heine Aabø, Shailendra Bhandari, Sebastian Overskott, Ioannis Adamopoulos. From bottom left: Parissa Amin and Kristian Wold.

The new members in NordSTAR with the first quantum computer in Norway. From top left: Heine Aabø, Shailendra Bhandari, Sebastian Overskott, Ioannis Adamopoulos. From bottom left: Parissa Amin and Kristian Wold.

Quantum computing for optimal cancer treatments 

Finally, a new PhD position will be announced soon to strengthen the quantum team in NordSTAR. The new PhD fellow will explore quantum computing approaches for increasing the efficiency of finding optimal cancer therapies and treatments, based on individual data.

Currently, large efforts are being made in cancer research to develop and validate clinically-relevant mathematical models of drug response. Calibrated models describing individual cancer dynamics can then be incorporated into clinically motivated optimization problems. 

Such a personalized approach is a substantial step forward as compared with the approach based on statistical analysis of a multitude of clinical trials which yields strategies to treat an "average" patient. A new research assistant, Parissa Amin, is currently working on this topic in NordSTAR. 

However, even models with a moderate level of description give rise to optimization problems of such a complexity that their exact solutions cannot be obtained. Quantum approaches may provide more efficient alternative ways to solve these optimization problems.

The new PhD will be supervised by Professor Sergiy Denysov and Professor Pedro Lind, and the work will be in collaboration with the Department of Medicine at the University of Oslo (UiO).

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Ahmed Elmokashfi, SimulaMet. Leader of research area: Security, safety and reliability.

Published: 09/12/2021 | OsloMet