# Questions tagged [density-operator]

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

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### Positive Semi-Definiteness of a Density Matrix - can the eigenvalues be larger than 1?

I know that one of the requirements for a density matrix is that it is positive-semidefinite. This means that the eigenvalues are non-negative (and sum to 1, so we can assign them the meaning of ...
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### Do pure states actually exist?

Is it possible to ever actually measure something so precisely that it actually collapses to a pure state, or do we really just get arbitrarily close? If a wavefunction never actually collapses to a ...
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### Can a density matrix have more than two dimensions?

It crossed my mind when reviewing density matrices that if you were looking at a composite system consisting of three subsystems, (indexed by three quantum numbers: $<i,j,k|\rho|i,j,k>$) then ...
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### Expanding a density matrix in terms of operators

In Lukasz's paper: https://arxiv.org/pdf/0909.2654.pdf He writes "consider a density matrix ρ, written as a polynomial of the 2N Majoranas cj in such a way that each cj occurs to the power 0 or 1 in ...
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### Direct Derivation of Kraus Operator from Interaction Hamiltonian

For the dynamics of open quantum systems, the Kraus operators $K_\kappa$ can be derived from the unitary orbit $U(t)\rho U(t)^\dagger$ for $\rho=\rho_S\otimes\rho_E$ of the composite system given by ...
1answer
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### Necessary and sufficient conditions for a pure state

I've seen some claims that idempotency ($\rho^2=\rho$) is necessary and sufficient to guarantee the existence of some state $\psi$ such that $\rho=|\psi\rangle\langle\psi|$, as well as claims on the ...
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### Non-diagonal elements in density matrix: interference effect between the statistical mixture

In Cohen-Tannoudji, at page 303, vol 1, it is given that Quote: \begin{array}{l}{\text { A calculation analogous to the preceding one gives the following expression }} \\ {\text { for the non-...
1answer
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### Entanglement of Werner States

Let the Werner state $$\rho_W = W\mid\Psi^-\rangle\langle\Psi^-\mid + \frac{1-W}{4}\mathbb{I},\ W\in [0,1],$$ where $|\Psi^-\rangle=(|01\rangle-|10\rangle)/\sqrt{2}$. I have repeatedly heard that ...
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### Relation between maximally mixed state and thermal state

Hawking calculated the density matrix of the outgoing radiation to be a thermal state. I have heard people say this is a maximally mixed state. Is this because given a fixed average energy in the ...
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### Lindblad and Input-Output Formalism in Quantum Optics

I'm confused about how to apply the Lindblad formalism and the input-output formalism in practice, and how one goes between the two. Suppose I have a cavity (C) coupled to a reservoir (R), with the ...