Open Quantum Systems: An Introduction (SpringerBriefs in Physics)

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Welcome to the course! Picture: Cutting-edge Finnish engineering from two centuries.

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Left: a VR Class Hv1 steam locomotive, which was built by. Oy Tampella Ab in Turku. Right: a quantum heat device that was fabricated and operated in the Pico group at Aalto University. Heat engines convert thermal energy into useful work. A steam engine, for example, uses the pressure of a hot fluid to produce mechanical motion. Design and optimisation of such machines require a thorough understanding of the basic rules that govern their performance.

More than years ago, this need was the driving force behind the emergence of classical thermodynamics , a universal theory that has ever since enabled engineers to devise more and more powerful trains, cars and airplanes. During the past two decades, a new era has begun for thermal machines, in which scientists are exploring miniaturization as a novel design principle. This development has recently led to landmark experiments showing that the working fluid of piston engines can indeed be reduced to tiny objects like an atom or even a single quantum spin.

This new generation of engines can be equipped with features that no classical engineer could have imagined; quantum phenomena like coherence, entanglement and the measurement-induced collapse of wave functions change the characteristics of thermodynamic processes, enable new mechanisms of energy conversion with no classical counterpart and might even make it possible to overcome the fundamental performance limits of macroscopic devices.

The search for strategies to describe these new features and utilise them for practical applications is the quest of quantum thermodynamics and the central topic of our course. Description: We will approach the world of quantum engines in two major steps.

In part I of our course lectures , we will, after a brief review of the basic rules of quantum mechanics, introduce the quantum-jump method and the Lindblad equation as powerful tools to describe the dynamics of open quantum systems. Using practical examples, we will then learn how these methods make it possible to describe the crucial phenomena of decoherence and dissipation. Using the tools introduced in part I, we will formulate the laws of thermodynamics for quantum systems far from equilibrium, learn how to model finite-time engine and refrigeration cycles in the quantum regime and discuss fundamental differences with classical thermodynamic processes.

After each lecture, we will give out an exercise sheet that should encourage you to develop your own thoughts by applying the concepts presented in the lectures to practical and research-related problems. Most of the exercise sheets will also guide you through a specific landmark paper that had a crucial impact on the development of its field. The exercises should be solved at home and will be discussed during the exercise classes accompanying the lectures. Every week, we will ask you to hand in your solutions for specified problems in written form two days before the respective exercise session.

Group work will be most welcome. Be able to work with the quantum-jump and Lindblad methods to describe open quantum systems. Understand the crucial role of decoherence and dissipation for quantum technologies. Be familiar with the rules of quantum thermodynamics and the most important paradigms of this theory. Have the essential tools to develop and analyse models for quantum thermal machines.

The precise nature of the system-environment interaction is of considerable importance in this respect. Currently we are exploring which consequences non-Markovianity on the fundamentally important problem of metrology and dissipative state preparation. Starting with mathematical concepts from the theory of orthogonal polynomials, we have derived an exact unitary transformation that maps the Hamiltonian of a quantum system coupled linearly to a continuum of bosonic or fermionic modes spin boson model to a Hamiltonian that describes a one-dimensional chain with only nearest-neighbour interactions.

This setting is then amenable to numerical simulation methods from condensed matter physics most notably the density matrix renormalization group method. We are developing the method and are applying it to the simulation of a wide variety of physical systems ranging from solid state physics, quantum information technologies to quantum biology.


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The exact results obtained using this technique has allowed us for example recently to put forward a microscopic mechanism to explain the observed long lasting exciton beating in a range of photosynthetic complexes. Click here if you are interested in applying to the group.


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Your Name required. Your Email required. Your Message Type your message Skip to content. Home People Director of the Institute Prof. Martin Plenio Prof. Susana F.

Open Quantum Systems : Angel Rivas :

Huelga Dr. Gerlinde Walliser Dr. Ewa Pasgreta Permanent Staff Dr. Ralf Aurich Dr.

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Francesco Cosco Dr. Ish Dhand Dr. Sandro Donadi Dr. Myung-Joong Hwang Dr. James Lim Dr. Julen Simon Pedernales Dr.

Open Quantum Systems and Control

Andrea Smirne Dr. Koenraad Audenaert Dr. Jianming Cai Dr. Filippo Caruso Dr. Mauro Paternostro Dr.

Open Quantum Systems

Javier Prior Dr. Alex Retzker Dr. Open Quantum Systems and Control Despite the best efforts of experimentalists, no quantum system is ever completely isolated from its environment especially so as the control of a quantum system is always achieved by outside interventions such as shining in lasers. Plenio, S. Huelga, A. Beige, and P.

A 59 , — Plenio and S. Entangled light from white noise. Huelga and M. Vibrations, Quanta and Biology.