Randomized benchmarking refers to a collection of protocols that in the past decade have become central methods for characterizing quantum gates. These protocols aim at efficiently estimating the quality of a set of quantum gates in a way that is resistant to state preparation and measurement errors. Over the years many versions have been developed, however a comprehensive theoretical treatment of randomized benchmarking has been missing. In this work, we develop a rigorous framework of randomized benchmarking general enough to encompass virtually all known protocols as well as novel, more flexible extensions. Overcoming previous limitations on error models and gate sets, this framework allows us, for the first time, to formulate realistic conditions under which we can rigorously guarantee that the output of any randomized benchmarking experiment is well described by a linear combination of matrix exponential decays. We complement this with a detailed analysis of the fitting problem associated with randomized benchmarking data. We introduce modern signal processing techniques to randomized benchmarking, prove analytical sample complexity bounds, and numerically evaluate performance and limitations. In order to reduce the resource demands of this fitting problem, we introduce novel, scalable postprocessing techniques to isolate exponential decays, significantly improving the practical feasibility of a large set of randomized benchmarking protocols. These postprocessing techniques overcome shortcomings in efficiency of several previously proposed methods such as character benchmarking and linear-cross entropy benchmarking. Finally, we discuss, in full generality, how and when randomized benchmarking decay rates can be used to infer quality measures like the average fidelity. On the technical side, our work substantially extends the recently developed Fourier-theoretic perspective on randomized benchmarking by making use of the perturbation theory of invariant subspaces, as well as ideas from signal processing.

PRX Quantum
Algorithms and Complexity

Helsen, J., Roth, I., Onorati, E., Werner, A. H., & Eisert, J. (2022). General framework for randomized benchmarking. PRX Quantum, 3(2), 020357:1–020357:54. doi:10.1103/PRXQuantum.3.020357