Efficient Classical Simulation of Continuous Variable Quantum Information Processes

Phys Rev Lett. 2002 Mar 4;88(9):097904. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.88.097904. Epub 2002 Feb 14.


We obtain sufficient conditions for the efficient simulation of a continuous variable quantum algorithm or process on a classical computer. The resulting theorem is an extension of the Gottesman-Knill theorem to continuous variable quantum information. For a collection of harmonic oscillators, any quantum process that begins with unentangled Gaussian states, performs only transformations generated by Hamiltonians that are quadratic in the canonical operators, and involves only measurements of canonical operators (including finite losses) and suitable operations conditioned on these measurements can be simulated efficiently on a classical computer.