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For this article, you won’t need to worry too much about these. Just know that they are important when representing the states of the qubit because a lot of quantum mechanics uses imaginary numbers.The theta and phi symbols are used to describe a vector on the Bloch sphere. In quantum mechanics, the theta influences the magnitude and phi determines the phase of the qubit. Again, you don’t need to understand this terminology for the purposes of this article as they can be thought of as angles on the Bloch sphere but I will link more information at the end of the article.
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If you know a bit about computers, you may know that computers use bits, which can either be on or off, usually referred to as 1 and 0 respectively. The states of these bits can be modified using logic gates like
These three gates correspond to rotations around the z-axis by different amounts, with T being a 45-degree rotation, S being a 90-degree rotation and Pauli-Z being a 180-degree rotation.
The Hadamard gate is very important because it puts the qubit into a state of superposition. It corresponds to a 90-degree rotation around the x and the z axes.
Qubits are the quantum equivalent of bits, but they work very differently from classical bits (the bits used in our computers). Qubits, like classical bits, can be in states of 0 and 1, also known as spin up and spin down, but what makes qubits useful is the concept of quantum superposition.
First we will look at the Pauli-X gate,also known as the NOT gate,and works very similarly to the NOT gate in classical computer science.All it does is switch the probabilities of |0>and |1>. So if we start the qubit with a 100%possibility of being0,then this gate will change it to a 100% possibi...
You’ve heard a bunch about this Bloch sphere throughout this article and it is just a sphere that is used to visualize the state of a qubit. So how does any of this relate to qubit logic gates? Well, logic gates correspond to rotations on the Bloch sphere, which modify the equation previously men...
One important thing to remember when it comes to the Bloch sphere and quantum gates is the phase of the qubit. The phase will generally “point” in the same direction as the arrow. If we look at the equation, phi is the angle of the arrow on the 2D (x and y axes) plane. The phase is very important...
I hope that this article was a nice introduction to quantum gates and some of the math behind it. There are many things I could not mention or explain in this article for the sake of time and staying on-topic but this is the groundwork to start learning more concepts.
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