Seminar Quantum Compilation

Seminar in Theoretical CS, Summer 2024


  • 02.01.2024: We are online!


  • Slides of introduction (coming soon)

Dates & Deadlines

TBAKick-off meeting (CS Department, building E1, 2nd floor, room 4201b)
TBATopic preferences due
TBADetailed outline due
TBAFull report due
TBAPresentation slides due
TBASeminar talks

Note that the full versions of your report and your slides should be your final submission and the camera-ready versions should differ only with regard to minor remarks, comments, and corrections by your supervisor. Please feel free, however, to talk to your supervisor about submitting preliminary versions before the due dates.


Practical quantum computing requires the development of efficient compilers that are able to translate high-level quantum algorithms into quantum circuits that are compatible with some given hardware constraints. The overall goal of a quantum compiler is to modify and rearrange the gates in a given quantum circuit in order to obtain an equivalent circuit with a reduced total gate count after mapping to the native gate set, and more favourable operations in terms of execution resources, fidelity, and runtime. Thus, the main purpose of a quantum compiler is to translate ideal quantum gate operations used in quantum algorithms into machine-level operations under constraints that arise from the special nature of quantum computers, to fight against the loss of quantum information due to decoherence effects. This involves techniques for synthesising (small) quantum circuits, low-level qubit control, and quantum error correction. The aim of this seminar is to give an overview of related approaches.


Basic knowledge in Data Structures and Algorithms as well as Formal Languages and Automata Theory is expected. Experience with Compiler Construction and/or Quantum Computing is helpful. The following lists gives some background information:


The following list gives a (still incomplete) overview of the topics.

1Frederic T. Chong, Diana Franklin, Margaret Martonosi: Programming languages and compiler design for realistic quantum hardware. Nature 549, 2017
2Medina Bandic, Sebastian Feld, Carmen G. Almudever: Full-stack quantum computing systems in the NISQ era: algorithm-driven and hardware-aware compilation techniques. DATE 2022
The Routing Problem in General
3Alexander Cowtan et al.: On the Qubit Routing Problem. TQC 2019
4Gushu Li, Yufei Ding, Yuan Xie: Tackling the Qubit Mapping Problem for NISQ-Era Quantum Devices. ASPLOS 2019
Compilation for Neutral-Atom Quantum Computers
5Ludwig Schmid et al.: Computational Capabilities and Compiler Development for Neutral Atom Quantum Processors: Connecting Tool Developers and Hardware Experts. arXiv, 2023
Compilation for Trapped-Ion Quantum Computers
6Fabian Kreppel et al.: Quantum Circuit Compiler for a Shuttling-Based Trapped-Ion Quantum Computer. Quantum 7, 2023
7Mark Webber et al.: Efficient Qubit Routing for a Globally Connected Trapped Ion Quantum Computer. Adv. Quantum Technologies 3(8), 2020
Compilation for Spin Quantum Computers
8Nikiforos Paraskevopoulos et al.: SpinQ: Compilation strategies for scalable spin-qubit architectures. ACM Transactions on Quantum Computing 5(1), 2023
9Robert Wille, Rod Van Meter, Yehuda Naveh: IBM’s Qiskit Tool Chain: Working with and Developing for Real Quantum Computers. DATE 2019
10Seyon Sivarajah et al.: t|ket⟩: A Retargetable Compiler for NISQ Devices. arXiv, 2020
11Damian S. Steiger, Thomas Häner, Matthias Troyer: ProjectQ: an open source software framework for quantum computing. Quantum 2, 2018
12Ali Javadi Abhari et al.: ScaffCC: Scalable compilation and analysis of quantum programs. Parallel Computing 45, 2015


Registration to the seminar is handled via the SuPra system.

Grading Scheme

You can access the grading scheme here.

Additional Material


Thomas Noll