Ashlesha Patil Featured by APS and UANews for Presentation on Tangram-Based Quantum Mechanics Puzzle

March 22, 2023
Ashlesha Patil Headshot

Ashlesha Patil

Ashlesha Patil, Wyant College PhD student and NSF-ERC Center for Quantum Networks (CQN) researcher, has done what might seem to some the "impossible"—she’s explaining quantum mechanics using a game. This week Ashlesha presented the project at the American Physical Society Meeting. She describes the game as, "much like tangram because the players are challenged to arrange colored blocks on a grid," She said. "The game isn't exactly 'real' quantum computation, but rather an educational tool to teach students – and even scientists – an unconventional, measurement-based way of mapping quantum circuits."

quantum mechanics tangram-based puzzle game

Screenshot of the tangram-based game developed by the UArizona student team. Players choose from a list of shapes on the left side and drag and drop them onto the game grid, which models a quantum circuit.

Ashlesha Patil / University of Arizona

Ashlesha's presentation was selected by the American Physical Society to be featured in their Master Tip Sheet for the 2023 March Meeting. A summary of her presentation appears on page 17 of the features sheet. And includes a link to her publication in IEEE. The project was done in collaboration with her advisors Saikat Guha, CQN Director and professor at Wyant College, and Don Towsley, professor at University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Ashlesha is working closely with initiatives based in CQN's educational and workforce development plan to bring the tangram-based game and more educational STEM opportunities to lower income areas of Arizona. She hopes that once the game is finished it will be included in outreach efforts as well as traditional classrooms nationwide. Read the UArizona press release. Ashlesha was also featured in a UArizona WONDER campaign video. Watch it here.