Community detection in quantum complex networks

Mauro Faccin, Piotr Migdal, Tomi H. Johnson, Ville Bergholm, Jacob D. Biamonte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Determining community structure is a central topic in the study of complex networks, be it technological, social, biological or chemical, static or in interacting systems. In this paper, we extend the concept of community detection from classical to quantum systems-a crucial missing component of a theory of complex networks based on quantum mechanics. We demonstrate that certain quantum mechanical effects cannot be captured using current classical complex network tools and provide new methods that overcome these problems. Our approaches are based on defining closeness measures between nodes, and then maximizing modularity with hierarchical clustering. Our closeness functions are based on quantum transport probability and state fidelity, two important quantities in quantum information theory. To illustrate the effectiveness of our approach in detecting community structure in quantum systems, we provide several examples, including a naturally occurring light-harvesting complex, LHCII. The prediction of our simplest algorithm, semiclassical in nature, mostly agrees with a proposed partitioning for the LHCII found in quantum chemistry literature, whereas our fully quantum treatment of the problem uncovers a new, consistent, and appropriately quantum community structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number041012
JournalPhysical Review X
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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