We examine the problem of finding the minimum number of Pauli measurements needed to uniquely determine an arbitrary n-qubit pure state among all quantum states. We show that only 11 Pauli measurements are needed to determine an arbitrary two-qubit pure state compared to the full quantum state tomography with 16 measurements, and only 31 Pauli measurements are needed to determine an arbitrary three-qubit pure state compared to the full quantum state tomography with 64 measurements. We demonstrate that our protocol is robust under depolarizing error with simulated random pure states. We experimentally test the protocol on two- and three-qubit systems with nuclear magnetic resonance techniques. We show that the pure state tomography protocol saves us a number of measurements without considerable loss of fidelity. We compare our protocol with same-size sets of randomly selected Pauli operators and find that our selected set of Pauli measurements significantly outperforms those random sampling sets. As a direct application, our scheme can also be used to reduce the number of settings needed for pure-state tomography in quantum optical systems.

1 aMa, Xian1 aJackson, Tyler1 aZhou, Hui1 aChen, Jianxin1 aLu, Dawei1 aMazurek, Michael, D.1 aFisher, Kent, A.G.1 aPeng, Xinhua1 aKribs, David1 aResch, Kevin, J.1 aJi, Zhengfeng1 aZeng, Bei1 aLaflamme, Raymond uhttp://arxiv.org/abs/1601.05379