Reverse annealing feature to be added to D-Wave chip
D-Wave System Inc. have recently announced that they will be adding a new feature to their devices which is very similar to one proposed in a recently published paper by JQC member Nicholas Chancellor, who belongs to the Structured Quantum Devices group supervised by Viv Kendon. The paper was published as New Journal of Physics doi:10.1088/1367-2630/aa59c4. This paper proposed a way to modify the control protocols of quantum annealers so that they can take initial conditions, and thus be used for quantum/classical hybrid algorithms, which allow the solution space to be explored more effectively as the figure shows. A similar idea had been proposed previously (doi:10.1007/s11128-010-0168-z ), but this previous work was done for closed systems and did not examine how such protocols could be experimentally implemented.
JQC members Nicholas Chancellor and Viv Kendon are currently planning experiments to test these new features on D-Wave devices, and Nicholas Chancellor has written a sequel paper arXiv:1609.05875 , examining how the controls can be further modified to also include bitwise uncertainty information.