An Optimal Product-State Approximation for 2-Local Quantum Hamiltonians with Positive Terms [article]

Ojas Parekh, Kevin Thompson
2022 arXiv   pre-print
We resolve the approximability of the maximum energy of the Quantum Max Cut (QMC) problem using product states. A classical 0.498-approximation, using a basic semidefinite programming relaxation, is known for QMC, paralleling the celebrated 0.878-approximation for classical Max Cut. For Max Cut, improving the 0.878-approximation is Unique-Games-hard (UG-hard), and one might expect that improving the 0.498-approximation is UG-hard for QMC. In contrast, we give a classical 1/2-approximation for
more » ... C that is unconditionally optimal, since simple examples exhibit a gap of 1/2 between the energies of an optimal product state and general quantum state. Our result relies on a new nonlinear monogamy of entanglement inequality on a triangle that is derived from the second level of the quantum Lasserre hierarchy. This inequality also applies to the quantum Heisenberg model, and our results generalize to instances of Max 2-Local Hamiltonian where each term is positive and has no 1-local parts. Finally, we give further evidence that product states are essential for approximations of 2-Local Hamiltonian.
arXiv:2206.08342v1 fatcat:o2j6k4yfenfgjordugs5o22skm