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Jacob Biamonte

Jacob Biamonte circa 2022

Fellow of the Institute of Physics
Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) 

Visiting Sr Scientist, Quantum
NASA Ames Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory and
Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science, University Space Research Association
NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Federal Airfield, Mountain View, California

Higher Education

Doctor of Science in Mathematical Physics, Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, 2022

Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science, University of Oxford, 2010

What I Do

I formulate theories and models to better understand universal quantum computers, tensor networks, and quantum algorithms. My work includes evaluating the difficulty level of using quantum computing to accelerate machine learning, merging complex network theory with quantum information science, and advancing graphical reasoning in tensor networks and quantum algorithm engineering. My recent findings contribute to understanding the limits of modern quantum algorithms.


I work at the intersection of quantum applications and the inherent constraints of physical hardware, and my work has contributed to the abstraction of these limitations. This has contributed to the development of physically relevant models that enable universal quantum computation, has revealed constraining aspects of quantum algorithms and helped broaden the applicability of quantum computation into data-driven areas such as machine learning.

I am currently part of the Visiting Scientists Program at the NASA Ames Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, under the Universities Space Research Agency (USRA), Academic Mission Service program in Mountain View, California. Additionally, I hold a visiting appointment at the Simons Foundation for the Theory of Computing at the University of California, Berkeley, just an hour’s drive away. 

After completing my undergraduate studies at Portland State University, I worked as (if not the first) Quantum Applications Scientist at D-Wave Systems Inc. in Vancouver, Canada, and as a Fellow at Harvard University in the Aspuru-Guzik Group. I obtained my PhD from the University of Oxford in 2010. Subsequently, I was mentored by John Carlos Baez and supervised by Arthur Ekert as part of a joint Oxford/Singapore postdoctoral program and I worked as a Lecturer at St Peter’s College Oxford before joining the Institute for Scientific Interchange (ISI Foundation) in Torino, Italy, as their Quantum Science Research Group Leader (2012-2017). In 2017, I joined the MIT-founded Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology as a Tenure Track Associate Professor, eventually being promoted to the Head of the Laboratory for Quantum Information Processing and then to tenured Full Professor. I became the first American-born scientist to successfully defend a higher Doctorate at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology. My time in Moscow was cut short due to the war against Ukraine.

In 2018, I was honored with the USERN Medal in Formal Sciences. I have also been chosen as a Foundational Questions Institute investigator, elected Fellow of the Institute of Physics, and the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications. I serve as a consultant, subject matter expert and scientific advisor to several public and private institutions. I teach applied and engineering mathematics, quantum information theory, and quantum computation.


Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Founded and operated with MIT) — Moscow, Russia
Full Professor in Computer Science and in Physics, 2022–2023
Head of Laboratory for Quantum Information Processing, 2019–2023
Tenure Track Associate Professor in Computer Science and in Physics, 2017–2022

Institute for Scientific Interchange (ISI Foundation) — Torino, Italy
Research Leader, Quantum Science Laboratory, 2012–2017

University of Oxford — Oxford, United Kingdom
Research Fellow, University of Oxford/National University of Singapore (joint program), 2011–2012
College Lecturer in Physics, St Peter’s College, Oxford, 2009–2012
Doctoral Thesis Prize Fellow, October 2010–April 2011
Tutor, Mathematical Institute, 2007–2010
Doctoral Student, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council Studentship, 2007–2010

Harvard University, Aspuru-Guzik Group — Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Fellow, April–September 2007 and March–October 2008

D-Wave Systems Inc., ‘The Quantum Computing Company’ — Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Applications Scientist, 2005–2007
Research Associate, 2004–2005

Former PhD Advisees and Long Term Visitors

Dr Akshay Vishwanathan (Postdoc, NUS)
Dr Andrey Kardashin (Postdoc, RIKEN)
Dr Alexey Uvarov (Postdoc, UCL)
Dr Oksana Borzenkova (Postdoc, MSU)
Dr Jacob Turner
Dr Piotr Migdał (CTO, Quantum Fly Trap)

Former MSc Thesis Advisees

Boris Arseniev (PhD Student, Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology)
Anton Bozhedarov (PhD Student, Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology)
Alexandr Berezutski (PhD Student, Université de Sherbrooke at the Institut Quantique in Quebec)
Maxim Beketov
Yudong Cao (CTO & Co-Founder, Zapata)

Former Postdoctoral and Research Scientists Mentored

Dr Soumik Adhikary (Postdoc, UCL)
Dr Ville Bergholm (Scientist at IQM Quantum)
Dr Mauro Faccin (Postdoc, University of Bologna) 
Dr Tomi Johnson
Prof Mikhail Malovichko (Assistant Professor, MIPT)
Dr Anastasia Pervishko (Postdoc, Skoltech)
Prof Richik Sengupta (Associate Professor, MIPT)
Dr Ksenia Samburskaya (Educational and Research Project Manager, Russian Rail)
Dr Timur Tlyachev (CTO, Haut.Al)
Prof Dmitry Yudin (Assistant Professor, Skoltech)
Dr Igor Zacharov (Sr Research Scientist, Skoltech)

Selected Research Papers

Universal variational quantum computation
J Biamonte
(Letter) Physical Review A 103, L030401 (2021)
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevA.103.L030401 (open access)

Tensor network contractions for #SAT
J Biamonte, J Morton and J Turner
Journal of Statistical Physics 160, 1389 (2015)
DOI: 10.1007/s10955-015-1276-z ArXiv: 1405.7375

Simulation of electronic structure Hamiltonians using quantum computers
J Whitfield, J Biamonte and A Aspuru-Guzik
Molecular Physics 109, 735 (2011)
DOI: 10.1080/00268976.2011.552441 ArXiv: 1001.3855

Realizable Hamiltonians for universal adiabatic quantum computers
J Biamonte and P Love
Physical Review A 78, 012352 (2008)
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevA.78.012352 ArXiv: 0704.1287