The density operator describes a quantum system in an (in general mixed) state.

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Density matrix and basis

Given an hermitian operator $\hat{A}$ I can span the Hilbert space in terms of the eigenvectors $\lvert a_i\rangle$. For example in a spin $1/2$ system I can choose to work in a basis from the ...
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Can every density operator be written as an outer product of two vectors?

I have a feeling this is a very basic question. I apologize if it is. Using Dirac's notation, can every (mixed) density operator $\rho_A$ of system $A$ be written as the ket-bra (outer) product $|a_1 ...
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Density Matrix representation of excited atoms

I'd like to get an answer to this question from someone who knows his density matrix theory. I want to compare two different systems and ask how their density matrix representation looks. First look ...
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Two definitions of the density matrix?

There seems to be two different definitions of definitions of density matrices in Physics. In Quantum Information we define a the density matrix associated with a wave function $ | \psi \rangle$ as ...
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Diagonalisation: Schmidt vs eigenvalue - when to use which?

In physics we encounter diagonalisation of matrices or operators in a variety of areas. But there are different kinds, the main two being Schmidt decomposition and eigenvalue diagonalisation. The two ...
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A seemingly paradox for Eigenstate Thermalization Hypothesis (ETH)

ETH states that for a system, all of its eigenstates thermalize. To be more specific, consider an energy eigenstate of the full system $H|n\rangle=E_n|n\rangle$. If the full system is in this ...
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What is the qualitative difference between quantum superpostion and mixed states? [duplicate]

As I understand it, if one has a complete knowledge of the state of a quantum system (insofar as one knows the statistical distributions of all the observables associated with the state) then one can ...
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Quantum computing entanglement dimensions question

While trying to understand the basics of how quantum computers work, I recently read this statement. "...consider that single-qubit states can be represented by a point inside a sphere in ...
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Physical meaning of $Tr(\rho ^2)$

If $\rho$ is the density matrix of a system then $Tr(\rho ^2) \leq 1$. If the equality holds the system is in a pure state and it is in a mixed state otherwise. But, what is the physical meaning of ...
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Completely positive maps and symmetric states

Let $\mathcal{N}$ be a completetely positive trace preserving map (aka a quantum channel) acting on a finite dimensional system $\mathrm{A}$, and let $\pi$ denote the maximally mixed state on ...
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Probability distribution of a pretty-good measurement

Let $\rho_{XE}$ be a classical-quantum state. That is, $$ \rho_{XE} = \sum_{x}\Pr[X=x] \cdot |x\rangle \langle x | \otimes \rho_{x} $$ where every $\rho_{x}$ is a density matrix with ...
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Berry phase with density matrix approach

Berry phase, coming from Schrodinger equation, has well known form in terms of closed integral $$\gamma = \int_C A(\xi) d\xi $$ with Berry connection $$A(\xi) = i < \psi(\xi) | \partial_{\xi} | ...
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the density matrix in QFT on a cylinder

My question regards the density matrix in quantum field theory on a cylinder. The partition function is given by $Z=\text{Tr} e^{-\beta H}$. The elements of this thermal density matrix become ...
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Can mixed states be treated in the second quantization formalism? [closed]

In the first quantization formalism, mixed states can be handled using density matrices. When treating many-body quantum systems however, the second quantization formalism often comes handier, ...
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Normal Ordering and Smearing

I read on Wikipedia two different descriptions of the "Husimi-Q representation." One is that it is the Wigner function convolved with a Gaussian, which in particular results in a positive definite ...
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58 views

How to represent a Liouville projection superoperator in Hilbert space?

Is there a general way to represent a Liouville projection operator in Hilbert space, or can they take on any form so long as they satisfy the required properties of a projector? e.g. The thermal ...
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Understanding the optimal approximate qubit cloning method

I'm trying to understand the operation used for optimal cloning of pure qubits states from the paper Optimal Cloning of Pure States by R. F. Werner. The paper describes the optimal cloning method ...
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1answer
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2x2 Matrices that are not valid quantum states

Given a 2-dimensional Hilbert space, quantum states can be expressed as $2\times 2$ density matrices. In terms of the Pauli matrices, or Bloch representation, they can be written as \begin{equation} ...
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Using open system dynamics to define a quantum state

Background The density matrix of a closed quantum system with Hilbert space $\mathscr H$ evolves according to the von Neumann equation \begin{align*} i\hbar\dot\rho=[H,\rho]. \end{align*} Given a ...
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How to include temperature effect in optical bloch equations (optical pumping)?

My problem is about the optical pumping of Alkali atoms by circularly polarized pump light. Consider a circular polarized light ($\Delta m=+1$) $$\vec{E}(z,t)= \vec{E}^{(+)}_0 e^{-i\nu t}+c.c. $$ ...
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Density matrix from Wigner distribution

Density matrix or Wigner function can be defined from the other with Fourier (or inverse) transformation. equivalently the value of W(q,p) can be seen as the mean value of the displaced parity ...
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What are fragmented condensates?

It is defined that if more than one eigenvalue of the one-body density matrix are macroscopically occupied the condensate is said to be fragmented. $$ n^{(1)},n^{(2)},...=\mathcal{O}(\mathcal{N}) $$ ...
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reduced density matrix of multiparticle system

Let the state of a composite system is $|\psi_{i}\rangle$ then the density matrix is defined as, $\rho=\sum P_{i}|\psi_{i}\rangle\langle\psi_{i}|$ Consider a composite system of two particles and its ...
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Complex vector on Block sphere [closed]

I've the following problem. Given this vector on a 3D complex space: $$\\\\ {\phi_{1}} = \begin{matrix}% 1/2(-1, & i\sqrt{2}, &1)^{T} \end{matrix}\\ $$ Is it possible to draw it on the ...
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Reduced density matrix

During a course on quantum mechanics we've been talking about density matrices. Now I came across the following exercise. Consider a two spin $\frac{1}{2}$ systems, labeled 1 and 2. Calculate: ...
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Density matrices vs Pauli matrices

Studying quantum mechanics, I have suddenly come to the conclusion that Pauli matrices are essentially density matrices for spin systems. Does it make any sense or I have missed something?
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Relationship between the Lindblad Equation and Redfield Equation

Both the Lindblad and Redfield Equation both model the open quantum system dynamics given a Hamiltonian and some operators. What is the relationship between the two equations? How can they transformed ...
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83 views

Harmonic oscillator with heat bath

I need to calculate the expectation value for a harmonic oscillator coupled to a heat bath using the trace method. I know that the density operator looks like: $$\rho = \frac{e^{-H / k_B ...
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How do we prove $P(a_{n})=Tr\{\rho|a_{n}\rangle\langle a_{n}|\}$ in a mixed state?

If we have a mixed state such that, with probability $P_{1}$ the system is in state $|\psi_{1}\rangle$ and with probability $P_{2}$ the system is in the state $|\psi_{2}\rangle$ How do we prove that ...
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Density matrix and entangled states

I am studying the density matrix formalism. I gather that: the trace of a density matrix, $tr(\rho)$ is always 1, if $tr(\rho^2) < 1$ we have a mixed state, otherwise a pure state, if $\rho$ ...
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Is density matrix really a description of 'state'? [closed]

Generally a density matrix is in fact a description of a set of equivalent (experimentally indistinguishable in linear QM) states. So there is no 1-to-1 correspondence between density matrix and ...
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Decoherence in the long time limit of density matrix elements

For a state $$ |\Psi(t)\rangle = \sum_{k}c_k e^{-iE_kt/\hbar}|E_k\rangle, $$ the density matrix elements in the energy basis are $$ \rho_{ab}(t) = c_a c^*_be^{-it(E_a -E_b)/\hbar} $$ How is it that ...
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Is it correct to represent a mixed state by a wavefunction?

Many sources (such as The Physics of Quantum Mechanics and the answers to this Physics.SE question) warn against conflating a mixed state where $|\psi\rangle$ is $|n\rangle$ with probability $p_n$, ...
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Density matrices & spin correlation

So I have two 1/2 spin systems A and B in a singlet state $|ψ>=\frac{1}{\sqrt{2}}(|\uparrow \downarrow>−|\downarrow \uparrow>)$ . The question is: If I measured B and got $S_{Bz}=\hbar/2$ . ...
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How to define a non-thermal state? [closed]

I got a very vague question. A thermal state is defined by $$\rho=\frac{e^{(-\beta H)}}{Z_\beta},$$ where $Z$ is the partition function. I want do now calculations with "non-thermal states", but ...
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canonical ensemble density matrix numerical integration of the von Neumann equation

I am working with a numerically calculated Eigensystem of a given non-linear Hamiltonian. As a test I integrated Schrödinger equation for each eigenstate in time with Dormand Prince 54 and also Runge ...
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Difference between DMRG (density matrix renomalization group) and MPS (matrix product states)?

I am learning DMRG recently. I noticed there are many papers both in the DMRG approach and MPS (such as variational matrix product state (VMPS) by F.Verstraete and J.I.Cirac) approach. In my eyes, ...
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How does one compute the state of a quantum system following imperfect measurement?

Suppose I have a quantum system $S$ ("system") with Hamiltonian $H_S$ and initial density matrix $\rho_S(0)$. I allow $S$ to interact with another system $P$ ("probe"), which has Hamiltonian $H_P$ and ...
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Trace representation of density matrix question [closed]

System $A$ and system $B$ form a composite system. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Partial_trace I wonder why $\rho_{AB}$ cannot be represented as $(\text{tr}_{B}(\rho))\otimes ...
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Is there a physical significance to non-normal states of the algebra of observables?

Quantum theory may be formalized in several different ways. Generally, the physical discussion of different states of a quantum system distinguishes pure and mixed states, and then subsumes both in a ...
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Seemingly a paradox on the eigenstate thermalization hypothesis (ETH)

In the research field of Many-body Localization (MBL), people are always talking about the eigenstate thermalization hypothesis (ETH). ETH asserts that for a isolated quantum system, all many-body ...
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Does this quote from my textbook imply that not all states are superpositions?

I read this at a book; The difference between bits and qubits is that a qubit can be in a state other than $|0\rangle$ or $|1\rangle$. It is also possible to form linear combinations of ...
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Definition of the “support” of the reduced density matrix

Some of the papers in condensed matter physics use the word "support" (space). For example, the following papers use the support especially for the reduced density matrix. ...
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Separability of density operators on tensor product spaces

Consider a composite system $\mathcal{H}=\mathcal{H}_{A}\otimes\mathcal{H}_{B}$ where $\mathcal{H}_{A}$ and $\mathcal{H}_{B}$ are Hilbert spaces of constituent components (say two qubits). Let ...
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Purity of a maximally mixed quantum state

The trace of the square of a density matrix(which is also called the Purity of the quantum state) is (lower)bounded by the inverse of the dimension of the Hilbert space and (upper) bounded by 1. I ...
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Density Matrix in Quantum Optics

I am studying laser physics and didn't get the whole idea of the density matrix (in this case for two-level systems). I know this is really basic so bear with me! I understand that the diagonal ...
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One-electron reduced density matrix: Argument for positive semidefiniteness

I cannot follow an argument for positive-semidefiniteness of the one-electron density matrix given in "Molecular Electronic-Structure Theory" by Helgaker/Jorgensen/Olsen. First some definitions: ...
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Lindblad equation solution

I have been trying to solve a Lindblad Equation and then thought about whether there is a closed form Lindblad Equation solution for most types. Googling hasn't lead me to anything useful. So, is ...
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What is the physical meaning of the Lindblad operator?

I read the wikipedia article on the Lindblad operator, but I still don't understand what this operator is supposed to describe. I therefore considered setting up an example in order to get the idea. ...