From Asymptotic Freedom to Theta Vacua: Qubit Embeddings of the O(3) Nonlinear Sigma Model

Conventional lattice formulations of $\theta$ vacua in the $1+1$-dimensional $O(3)$ nonlinear sigma model suffer from a sign problem. Here, we construct the first sign-problem-free regularization for \emph{arbitrary} $\theta$. Using efficient lattice \ac{MC} computations, we demonstrate how a Hamiltonian model of spin-$\tfrac12$ degrees of freedom on a 2-dimensional spatial lattice reproduces both the infrared sector for arbitrary $\theta$, as well as the ultraviolet physics of asymptotic freedom. Furthermore, as a model of qubits on a two-dimensional square lattice with only nearest neighbor interactions, it is naturally suited for studying the physics of $\theta$ vacua and asymptotic freedom on near-term quantum devices. Our construction generalizes to $\theta$-vacua in all $\CP(N-1)$ models, solving a long standing sign problem.