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Title: Quantum and semiclassical aspects of Lindblad dynamics
Author: Longstaff, Bradley
ISNI:       0000 0004 9350 1006
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2019
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The Lindblad equation is commonly used to model dissipation and decoherence in open quantum systems. Yet many of the properties of Lindblad dynamics are still little understood. This thesis explores various aspects of the Lindblad equation and its connections with non-Hermitian quantum theories. The evolution speed of Lindblad dynamics is investigated and an explicit expression for the speed is derived. The radial component, connected to the rate at which the purity of the state changes, is shown to be determined by the modified skew information of the Lindblad operators. The semiclassical time evolution of Gaussian states under Lindblad dynamics is then considered and a new type of phase-space dynamics is derived for the centre of a Gaussian Wigner function. By viewing the phase-space Lindblad equation as a Schroedinger equation with a non-Hermitian Hamiltonian, a further set of semiclassical equations are derived. These can describe the interference terms in Wigner functions. Further, a PT-symmetric two-level system driven through two consecutive exceptional points at finite speed is considered and an analytical expression for the probability of a non-adiabatic transition is derived. It is shown that the transition through the exceptional points can be experimentally addressed in a PT-symmetric lattice using Bloch oscillations. Finally, a quantum implementation of this PT-symmetric system using ultracold atoms in an optical lattice with single-particle losses is investigated.
Supervisor: Graefe, Eva-Maria Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral