James D. Whitfield

Assistant Professor of Physics at Dartmouth

James D. Whitfield headshot

Dartmouth College, Department of Physics & Astronomy
6127 Wilder Laboratory, Room 248
Hanover, New Hampshire 03755





“The overarching objective of our group is to understand the abilities and limitations of new and existing computers to perform physical simulations.”

Postdoctoral Fellowship


Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Ghent (Ghent, Belgium)
Advisor: Frank Verstraete


VCQ Postdoctoral Fellow, Vienna Center for Quantum Science and Technology (Vienna, Austria)
Advisor: Frank Verstraete


Postdoctoral Fellow, Columbia University (New York, NY)
Advisors: Boris Altshuler


Postdoctoral Fellow, NEC Laboratories America (Princeton, NJ)
Advisors: Jérémie Roland



Ph.D. Chemical Physics - Harvard University
Thesis: At the Intersection of Quantum Computing and Quantum Chemistry
Advisor: Alan Aspuru-Guzik


A.M. Chemistry - Harvard University


Postdoctoral Fellow, Columbia University (New York, NY)
Advisors: Boris Altshuler



Walter and Constance Berke Fellowship


Ford Postdoctoral Fellowship


Molecular Physics Young Author Prize, Journal of Molecular Physics For "Simulation of electronic structure Hamiltonians using quantum computers"


Harvard University Graduate Prize Fellowship, Harvard University

Recent Papers

  1. K Setia, R Chen, J E Rice, A Mezzacapo, M Pistoia, James Daniel Whitfield. Reducing qubit requirements for quantum simulation using molecular point group symmetries. (Preprint) arXiv:1910.14644.

  2. J Yang and J Brown and James Daniel Whitfield. Measurement on quantum devices with applications to time dependent density functional theory. (Preprint) arXiv:1909.03078.

  3. K Setia, S Bravyi, A Mezzacapo, James Daniel Whitfield. Superfast encodings for fermionic quantum simulation. Physical Review Research, 1, 033033, 2019.

  4. R W Chien, S Xue, T S Hardikar, K Setia, James Daniel Whitfield. Analysis of Superfast Encoding Performance for Electronic Structure Simulations. Physical Review A, 100, 032337, 2019.

  5. S Gulania, James Daniel Whitfield. Young frames for quantum chemistry. (Preprint) arXiv:1904.10469.

  6. J Brown, J Yang, James Daniel Whitfield. Solver for the electronic V-representation problem of time-dependent density functional theory. (Preprint) arXiv:1904.10958.

  7. J Brown, James Daniel Whitfield. Basis set convergence of Wilson basis functions for electronic structure. Journal of Chemical Physics, 151, 064118, 2019.

  8. K Setia, James Daniel Whitfield. Bravyi-Kitaev Superfast simulation of fermions on a quantum computer. The Journal of Chemical Physics, 148, 164104, 2018.

  9. C Schilling, M Altunbulak, S Knecht, A Lopes, James Daniel Whitfield, M Christandl, D Gross, M Reiher. Generalized Pauli constraints in small atoms. Physical Review A, 97, 052503, 2018.

  10. G Zhu, Y Subasi, James Daniel Whitfield, M Hafezi. Hardware-efficient fermionic simulation with a cavity-QED system. New Physics Journal Quantum Information, 4, 16, 2018.

  11. V Havlíček, M Troyer, James Daniel Whitfield. Operator Locality in Quantum Simulation of Fermionic Models. ˇPhysical Review A, 95, 032332, 2017.

  12. James Daniel Whitfield, V Havlíček, M Troyer. Local spin operators for fermion simulations. Physical Review A, 94, 030301, 2016.

Other Publications

  1. S Barz, B Dakic, Y O Lipp, F Verstraete, James Daniel Whitfield, P Walther. Linear-optical generation of eigenstates of the two-site XY model. Physical Review X, 5(2):021010, 2015.

  2. Y Wang, F Dolde, J Biamonte, R Babbush, V Bergholm, S Yang, I Jakobi, P Neumann, A Aspuru-Guzik, James Daniel Whitfield, and J Wrachtrup. Quantum Simulation of Helium Hydride Cation in a Solid-State Spin Register. ACS Nano, 9(8):7769-7774, 2015.

  3. James Daniel Whitfield, M-H Yung, D G Tempel, S Boixo, A Aspuru-Guzik. Computational complexity of time-dependent density functional theory. New Journal of Physics, 16(8):083035, 2014.

  4. James Daniel Whitfield, Z Zimborás. On the NP-completeness of the Hartree-Fock method for translationally invariant systems. The Journal of Chemical Physics, 141(23):234103, 2014.

  5. James Daniel Whitfield. Communication: Spin-free quantum computational simulations and symmetry adapted states. The Journal of Chemical Physics, 139:021105, 2013.

  6. James Daniel Whitfield, P J Love, and A Aspuru-Guzik. Computational complexity in electronic structure. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 15(2):397-411, 2013.

  7. Z Zimboras, M Faccin, Z Kadar, James Daniel Whitfield, B Lanyon, and J Biamonte. Quantum transport enhancement by time-reversal symmetry breaking. Scientific Reports, 3:2361, 2013.

  8. James Daniel Whitfield, M Faccin, and J D Biamonte. Ground-state spin logic. EPL (Europhysics Letters), 99(5):57004, 2012.

  9. James Daniel Whitfield. Chapter 7 – Electronic Structure in “Mathematical Modeling II: Quantum Mechanics and Spectroscopy” by Troy L. Story. Zip Publishing, 2012.

  10. N C Jones, James Daniel Whitfield, P L McMahon, M-H Yung, R Van Meter, A Aspuru-Guzik, and Y Yamamoto. Faster quantum chemistry simulation on fault-tolerant quantum computers. New Journal of Physics, 14(11):115023, 2012. (Citations: 92)

  11. I Kassal, James Daniel Whitfield, A Perdomo-Ortiz, M-H Yung, and A Aspuru-Guzik. Simulating chemistry using quantum computers. Annual Review of Physical Chemistry, 62:185-207, 2011. (Citations: 211)

  12. James Daniel Whitfield, J Biamonte, and A Aspuru-Guzik. Simulation of electronic structure Hamiltonians using quantum computers. Molecular Physics, 109(5):735-750, 2011. (Citations: 222)

  13. J D Biamonte, V Bergholm, James Daniel Whitfield, J Fitzsimons, and A Aspuru-Guzik. Adiabatic quantum simulators. AIP Advances, 1(2):022126-022126, 2011.

  14. Z Li, M-H Yung, H Chen, D Lu, James Daniel Whitfield, X Peng, A Aspuru-Guzik, and J Du. Solving quantum ground-state problems with nuclear magnetic resonance. Scientific Reports, 1, 2011.

  15. B P Lanyon, James Daniel Whitfield, G G Gillett, M E Goggin, M P Almeida, I Kassal, J D Biamonte, M Mohseni, B J Powell, M Barbieri, et al. Towards quantum chemistry on a quantum computer. Nature Chemistry, 2(2):106-111, 2010. (Citations: 478)

  16. M-H Yung, D Nagaj, James Daniel Whitfield, and A Aspuru-Guzik. Simulation of classical thermal states on a quantum computer: A transfer-matrix approach. Physical Review A, 82(6):060302, 2010.

  17. James Daniel Whitfield, C A Rodríguez-Rosario, and A Aspuru-Guzik. Quantum stochastic walks: A generalization of classical random walks and quantum walks. Physical Review A, 81(2):022323, 2010. (Citations: 85)