Microsoft Quantum Challenge

Microsoft Quantum Challenge


Microsoft Quantum Challenge

Microsoft Quantum Challenge winners Announced

Interested in delving into quantum chemistry, linear algebra, teleportation, and much more? Students entered the Microsoft Quantum Challenge to see how far they could go! From around the world students investigated and solved problems facing the quantum universe using Microsoft’s simulator, LIQUi|>.

They won big prizes, and the opportunity to visit Microsoft Research and maybe gain an internship.


We are delighted to announce the winners of the Challenge. Interest over the past three months came from all round the world. The judging panel was impressed by all the entries. The following were chosen to receive prizes. Congratulations to the winners!

Each of the winners used the simulator for Language-Integrated Quantum Operations: LIQUi|> from Microsoft Research.
Read more on our blog >

Thien Nguyen Quantum Challenge winner Thien Nguyen
Australian National University, Canberra, Australia
Grand Prize – $5,000
Entry: Simulating Dynamical Input-Output Quantum Systems with LIQUi|>
Johannes Bausch Quantum Challenge winner Johannes Bausch

University of Cambridge, UK
Second Prize: $2,500
Entry: Quantum Neural Networks: A Hamiltonian Complexity Approach

Andras Pal Gilyen Quantum Challenge winner Andras Pal Gilyen

Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Second Prize: $2,500
Entry: Testing quantum state engineering protocols via LIQUi|> simulations

Ali Abdullah Husain Quantum Challenge winner Ali Abdullah Husain

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA
Second Prize: $2,500
Entry: Catching Nature in the Act: Real-Time Imaging of Quantum Systems with LIQUi|>

Vojtěch Havlíček Quantum Challenge winner Vojtěch Havlíček

ETH Zurich, Switzerland
Second Prize: $2,500 (shared)
Team Entry: Solving Maximally-Constrained 1-SAT Problems with Oracular Access

Antony Milne Quantum Challenge winner Antony Milne

Imperial College, UK
Second Prize: $2,500 (shared)
Team Entry: Solving Maximally-Constrained 1-SAT Problems with Oracular Access

Andrew Simmons Quantum Challenge winner Andrew Simmons

Imperial College, UK
Second Prize: $2,500 (shared)
Team Entry: Solving Maximally-Constrained 1-SAT Problems with Oracular Access


The Quantum Challenge

The Challenge is now closed.

The Quantum Architectures and Computing Group QuArC is seeking exceptional students!

We are looking for students who are eager to expand their knowledge of quantum computing, and who can translate thoughts into programs.

How to enter

The Challenge is now closed.

First step, register for the Challenge so that you can receive updates about the contest.

In the challenge you will use the LIQUi|> simulator to solve a novel problem and then report on your findings. So, think of a project. Then, download the simulator from GitHub and use it to solve your problem. Finally, write a report about your findings and submit it. Your report submission will enter you into the Challenge.

In the report, present a description of the project including goals, methods, challenges, and any result obtained using LIQUi|>. You do not need to submit circuits and the software you develop, however, sample input and output for LIQUi|> must be submitted to show you used the simulator in the project. Your entry must consist of six pages or less, in PDF format.

The Challenge is open to students at colleges and universities world-wide (with a few restrictions) and aged 18+. No purchase necessary. For full details, see the Official Rules.

The prizes

The Challenge is now closed.

The Quantum Challenge is your chance to win a big prize!

  • First Prize:  $5,000
  • Second Prizes:  $2,500 (four available)
  • Honorary Mention:  Certificates will be presented to runner-up entries

Extra – visits or internship interviews

As a result of the challenge, some entrants could be invited to visit the QuArC team at Microsoft Research in Redmond, or have an opportunity to interview for internships at Microsoft Research. Internships are highly prestigious and involve working with the QuArC team for 12 weeks on cutting edge research.

Judging criteria

Entries will be judged by a panel of experts at Microsoft Research based on the following criteria:

  • 30% – Originality of the idea
  • 40% – Depth of use of the LIQUi|> simulator
  • 30% – Readability of the report


The Challenge is now closed.

Register for the challenge as soon as you can.

Ensure that your entry is six pages or less, in PDF format.

Make your submission via EasyChair. You can edit your entry up until the closing time. Only one entry per person will be accepted. The Challenge lasts for ten weeks. The deadline for entries is April 29, 2016.


Quantum Challenge FAQ

Is the challenge open to undergraduates and PhD students?


Can I enter if I am not a student?

No. The Challenge is only for students at universities (see the official rules).

Can I submit more than one entry?


Can I work in a team?

Yes. Teams of up to three people are allowed. The team leader registers alone. The names of the team members are entered on EasyChair during submission and on the submitted report. If the submission wins, all team members will be acknowledged in any publicity and all team members will receive certificates. The cash prize will be sent only to the team leader who registered.

How long should the Challenge take me?

It depends on how well you know quantum computing and the area you are working in. A good rule of thumb would be two hours a day for a week, which would include writing the report.

Do I have to create new software?

Yes. The challenge is to apply the LIQUi|> simulator to a problem of your choosing.

Can I just submit a research paper?

No. Your write-up should include a description of how you used the simulator.