Postgraduate research opportunities

Noise-resilient quantum algorithms and software for quantum computers

Quantum computers are now a reality with immense potential to solve problems in a wide range of industries. However quantum processes have intrinsic uncertainty, which introduces noise in their results. We aim to quantify and mitigate this noise in realistic applications of quantum computers.

Number of places



Home fee, Stipend


24 April 2019


30 September 2020


4 years


The successful candidate should have an undergraduate degree in Mathematics, Physics, Computer Science or a related area. A strong education in quantum mechanics and machine learning is an advantage as will be excellent computer programming skills.

Project Details

Quantum computers are now a reality and have immense potential to solve problems of relevance for wide ranges of industrial applications. However, the results are inherently probabilistic and therefore have associated uncertainty and errors. Since quantum computers will allow to simulate systems not accessible on conventional computers, it is infeasible to verify these errors by simulations on conventional computers. The objectives of this project therefore are to first quantify the uncertainty based on the measurable error parameters of the quantum device, and then to use this theoretical framework to develop noise-resilient quantum algorithms. To this aim Bayesian hierarchical models for uncertainty quantification will be developed for quantum algorithm verification, and applied to quantum computing software in the fields of chemistry simulations, condensed matter physics, and machine learning, areas where quantum computers are expected to bring the largest impact in the near and medium term.

Two joint PhD studentships at the National Physical Laboratory, the University of Strathclyde and Cambridge Quantum Computing are available starting September 2019 and are open to applicants from the European Union. Within the projects a theoretical model to estimate the fundamental uncertainty of quantum algorithms will be established, and used to develop quantum software that minimises errors on existing quantum computers. The methods will be included in the quantum software compilers developed at CQC, and will provide theoretical guidance for the experimental qubit measurements at NPL. The studentship will cover tuition fees and provides an enhanced stipend for a period of 4 years. The students will be based mainly in the Quantum Science Department at the Teddington NPL site in Greater London, and will have the opportunity of internships with a number of industrial partners.

Funding Details

EPSRC iCASE studentship, in partnership with the National Physical Laboratory and Cambridge Quantum Computing Ltd.



How to apply

Enquiries and applications should be made by email to Dr Ivan Rungger and Dr Ross Duncan.

To apply please attach the following to the email: a motivation letter, a list of lectures followed with the corresponding evaluations, and your CV, including names and contact information of two referees.