A comparative study of optical parallel computers working in quantum and classical modes

P. Heszler, L. B. Kish

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

1 Citation (Scopus)


A model of parallel optical computer for Fourier transform tasks is built. The computer operates in both quantum and classical modes. The quantum computer (QC) works with entangled photons and the input gates are n-qubit sensitive, while the classical computer (CC) operates without entanglement. The information capacity (I) for both CC and QC is given as a function of number of qubits and Np (number of photons per input pixel). It is shown that the information capacity significantly increases for the quantum computer compared to the classical one as the number of qubits is increased, assuming that Np is constant for both the QC and CC, i.e. same amount of energy input is assumed for the computers. However, it is also pointed out that the complexity of the QC significantly increases, too. To quantify this, we introduce a new physical quantity called physical complexity (noted as Q). We define the physical complexity (Q) of a computer as Σi,klog2nkai where k runs over all the gates/elements in the computer; nai is the number of distinguishable states what a gate can set for ai. For QC ai is defined as the ith coefficient of the wave function. For CC it as the ith independent component of the Fourier transform of the energy flow what a particular gate is able to control. By using this definition we show that, for both the quantum and classical computers built in this work, I ≤ Q, in other words the information capacity is less or equal than the physical complexity. Intuitively we suggest that this is a general law that is valid for every computer irrespectively of type, quantum or classic, and architecture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-255
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication statusPublished - Sep 19 2003
EventNoise and Information in Nanoelectronics, Sensors, and Standards - Santa Fe, NM, United States
Duration: Jun 2 2003Jun 4 2003



  • Fourier transform
  • Information
  • Physical complexity
  • Quantum computing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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