Possibly less useful yet intriguing extensions of the 2nd law of thermodynamics in small open quantum systems

17 01/2017

Tuesday, 17 Jan. 2017, 15:00 - 16:30

Presenter: Raam UZDIN
Host: Marcus Huber
Where: IQOQI Seminar Room, 2nd Floor, Boltzmanngasse 3, 1090 Vienna

Quantum thermodynamics deals with thermodynamic effects and thermodynamic constraints (e.g. the 2nd law) that emerge in out-of-equilibrium microscopic open quantum systems, and in microscopic heat machines. Presently, the technology developed for quantum computing is sufficient for exploring quantum thermodynamic experimentally (new experimental results will be shown). On top of the second law, thermodynamic resource theory predicts additional mathematical constraints on thermal transformation of microscopic systems. Unlike the second law, these constraints presently cannot be related to thermodynamic observables. Consequently, they are useful for some theoretical purposes, but not for making concrete predictions on realistic scenarios. In this talk I will present a new formalism that yields additional “seconds laws” that follow the logic and structure of the standard 2nd law. While the 2nd law deals with the first moment of the energy (average heat, average work), the observables in the new laws are higher moments of the energy. I will show several scenarios where these laws provide concrete answers to “blind spots” that are not addressed by the standard 2nd law. In other cases tighter bounds are obtained compared to the standard 2nd law. Potentially, this formalism can significantly extend the thermodynamic framework, and put additional practical bounds on thermal transformations and microscopic heat machines. Time permitting, I will discuss the connection to quantum coherence measures and list several research directions.