Reducing the complexity of quantum algorithms to treat quantum chemistry problems is essential to demonstrate an eventual quantum advantage of noisy-intermediate scale quantum devices over their classical counterpart. Significant improvements have been made recently to simulate the time-evolution operator U(t)=eiĤt, where Ĥ is the electronic structure Hamiltonian, or to simulate Ĥ directly (when written as a linear combination of unitaries) by using block encoding or qubitization techniques. A fundamental measure quantifying the practical implementation complexity of these quantum algorithms is the so-called 1-norm of the qubit representation of the Hamiltonian, which can be reduced by writing the Hamiltonian in factorized or tensor-hypercontracted forms, for instance. In this paper, we investigate the effect of classical preoptimization of the electronic structure Hamiltonian representation, via single-particle basis transformation, on the 1-norm. Specifically, we employ several localization schemes and benchmark the 1-norm of several systems of different sizes (number of atoms and active space sizes). We also derive a formula for the 1-norm as a function of the electronic integrals and use this quantity as a cost function for an orbital-optimization scheme that improves over localization schemes. This paper gives more insights about the importance of the 1-norm in quantum computing for quantum chemistry and provides simple ways of decreasing its value to reduce the complexity of quantum algorithms.
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