In statistical mechanics, a small system exchanges conserved charges---heat, particles, electric charge, etc.---with a bath. The small system thermalizes to the canonical ensemble, or the grand canonical ensemble, etc., depending on the charges. The charges are usually represented by operators assumed to commute with each other. This assumption was removed within quantum-information-theoretic (QI-theoretic) thermodynamics recently. The small system's long-time state was dubbed "the non-Abelian thermal state (NATS)." We propose an experimental protocol for observing a system thermalize to the NATS. We illustrate with a chain of spins, a subset of which form the system of interest. The conserved charges manifest as spin components. Heisenberg interactions push the charges between the system and the effective bath, the rest of the chain. We predict long-time expectation values, extending the NATS theory from abstract idealization to finite systems that thermalize with finite couplings for finite times. Numerical simulations support the analytics: The system thermalizes to the NATS, rather than to the canonical prediction. Our proposal can be implemented with ultracold atoms, nitrogen-vacancy centers, trapped ions, quantum dots, and perhaps nuclear magnetic resonance. This work introduces noncommuting charges from QI-theoretic thermodynamics into quantum many-body physics: atomic, molecular, and optical physics and condensed matter.

UR - https://arxiv.org/abs/1906.09227 ER - TY - JOUR T1 - The quasiprobability behind the out-of-time-ordered correlator JF - Phys. Rev. Y1 - 2018 A1 - Nicole Yunger Halpern A1 - Brian Swingle A1 - Justin Dressel AB -Two topics, evolving rapidly in separate fields, were combined recently: The out-of-time-ordered correlator (OTOC) signals quantum-information scrambling in many-body systems. The Kirkwood-Dirac (KD) quasiprobability represents operators in quantum optics. The OTOC has been shown to equal a moment of a summed quasiprobability. That quasiprobability, we argue, is an extension of the KD distribution. We explore the quasiprobability's structure from experimental, numerical, and theoretical perspectives. First, we simplify and analyze the weak-measurement and interference protocols for measuring the OTOC and its quasiprobability. We decrease, exponentially in system size, the number of trials required to infer the OTOC from weak measurements. We also construct a circuit for implementing the weak-measurement scheme. Next, we calculate the quasiprobability (after coarse-graining) numerically and analytically: We simulate a transverse-field Ising model first. Then, we calculate the quasiprobability averaged over random circuits, which model chaotic dynamics. The quasiprobability, we find, distinguishes chaotic from integrable regimes. We observe nonclassical behaviors: The quasiprobability typically has negative components. It becomes nonreal in some regimes. The onset of scrambling breaks a symmetry that bifurcates the quasiprobability, as in classical-chaos pitchforks. Finally, we present mathematical properties. The quasiprobability obeys a Bayes-type theorem, for example, that exponentially decreases the memory required to calculate weak values, in certain cases. A time-ordered correlator analogous to the OTOC, insensitive to quantum-information scrambling, depends on a quasiprobability closer to a classical probability. This work not only illuminates the OTOC's underpinnings, but also generalizes quasiprobability theory and motivates immediate-future weak-measurement challenges.

VL - A UR - https://arxiv.org/abs/1704.01971 CP - 97 U5 - https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevA.97.042105 ER - TY - JOUR T1 - Resilience of scrambling measurements JF - Phys. Rev. Y1 - 2018 A1 - Brian Swingle A1 - Nicole Yunger Halpern AB -Most experimental protocols for measuring scrambling require time evolution with a Hamiltonian and with the Hamiltonian's negative counterpart (backwards time evolution). Engineering controllable quantum many-body systems for which such forward and backward evolution is possible is a significant experimental challenge. Furthermore, if the system of interest is quantum-chaotic, one might worry that any small errors in the time reversal will be rapidly amplified, obscuring the physics of scrambling. This paper undermines this expectation: We exhibit a renormalization protocol that extracts nearly ideal out-of-time-ordered-correlator measurements from imperfect experimental measurements. We analytically and numerically demonstrate the protocol's effectiveness, up to the scrambling time, in a variety of models and for sizable imperfections. The scheme extends to errors from decoherence by an environment.

VL - A UR - https://arxiv.org/abs/1802.01587 CP - 97 U5 - https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevA.97.062113 ER -