Quantum operations as resources

Speaker: Thomas Theurer, UCalgary

Date: Wed, Oct 27, 2021

Location: Online

Subject: Mathematics

Class: Scientific


Protocols and devices that exploit quantum mechanical effects can outperform their classical counterparts in certain tasks ranging from communication and computation to sensing. Intuitively speaking, the reason for this is that different physical laws allow for different technological applications. Therefore, the question where quantum mechanics differs from classical physics is not only of foundational or philosophical interest but might have technological implications too. To address it in a systematic manner, so-called quantum resource theories were developed. These are mathematical frameworks that emerge from (physically motivated) restrictions that are put on top of the laws of quantum mechanics and single out specific aspects of quantum theory as resources. A widely studied example would be the restriction to local operations and classical communication, which leads to the resource theory of entanglement. It is then investigated how these restrictions influence our abilities to do certain tasks (e.g., communicate securely), how these restrictions can be overcome, and how the resulting resources can be quantified. Historically, resource theories were mainly focused on the resources present in quantum states. After an introduction to the general topic, I will speak about my recent research on how these concepts can be extended to quantum operations and why this is of interest.