qupulse: A Quantum compUting PULse parametrization and SEquencing framework

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The qupulse project aims to produce a software toolkit facilitating experiments involving pulse driven state manipulation of physical qubits.

It provides a high-level hardware-independent representation of pulses as well as means to translate this representation to hardware-specific device instructions and waveforms, execute these instructions and perform corresponding measurements.

Pulses can be assembled from previously defined subpulses, allowing easy construction of high-level from low-level pulses and re-use of previous work. Additionally, all pulses are parameterizable allowing users to fine-tune and adapt pulse templates to specific hardware or functionality without redefining an entire pulse sequence. To ensure meaningful parameter values, constraints can be put on parameters on a per-pulse basis.


Note that the project is still in development and thus not feature-complete.

The qupulse library is already used productively by the Quantum Technology Group at the 2nd Institute of Physics at the RWTH Aachen University. As such, some features - such as pulse definition - are mostly complete and tested and interfaces are expected to remain largely stable (or changes to be backward compatible). However, it is still possible for existing portions of the code base to be redesigned if this will increase the usability long-term.

The current feature list is as follows:


qupulse is available on PyPi and the latest release can be installed by executing:

pip3 install qupulse

qupulse version numbers follow the Semantic Versioning conventions.

Alternatively, the current development version of qupulse can be installed by executing in the cloned repository root folder:

pip3 install .

qupulse is developed using Python 3.6 and tested on 3.5 - 3.7 It relies on some external Python packages as dependencies; requirements.txt lists the versions of these qupulse is developed against. We intentionally did not restrict versions of dependencies in the install scripts to not unnecessarily prevent usage of newer releases of dependencies that might be compatible. However, if qupulse does encounter problems with a particular dependency version, try installing the version listed in requirements.txt.

The backend for TaborAWGs requires packages that can be found here. As a shortcut you can install it from the python interpreter via qupulse.hardware.awgs.install_requirements('tabor').

The data acquisition backend for AlazarTech cards needs a package that unfortunately is not open source (yet). If you need it or have questions contact simon.humpohl@rwth-aachen.de.

The optional script tests/utils/syntax_check.py invokes pyflakes to perform a static code analysis, so pyflakes should be installed if its usage is intended.


You can find documentation on how to use this library on readthedocs and IPython notebooks with examples in this repo. You can build it locally with python setup.py build_sphinx.

Folder Structure

The repository primarily consists of the folders qupulse (toolkit core code) and tests (toolkit core tests). Additional parts of the project reside in MATLAB (MATLAB interface) and doc (configuration and source files to build documentation)

qupulse contains the entire Python source code of the project and is further partitioned the following packages of related modules

Contents of tests mirror the structure of qupulse. For every <module> somewhere in qupulse there should exist a <module>Tests.py in the corresponding subdirectory of tests.