Dynamical maps, quantum detailed balance, and the Petz recovery map

Álvaro M. Alhambra, Mischa P. Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
50 Downloads (Pure)


Markovian master equations (formally known as quantum dynamical semigroups) can be used to describe the evolution of a quantum state ρ when in contact with a memoryless thermal bath. This approach has had much success in describing the dynamics of real-life open quantum systems in the laboratory. Such dynamics increase the entropy of the state ρ and the bath until both systems reach thermal equilibrium, at which point entropy production stops. Our main result is to show that the entropy production at time t is bounded by the relative entropy between the original state and the state at time 2t. The bound puts strong constraints on how quickly a state can thermalize, and we prove that the factor of 2 is tight. The proof makes use of a key physically relevant property of these dynamical semigroups, detailed balance, showing that this property is intimately connected with the field of recovery maps from quantum information theory. We envisage that the connections made here between the two fields will have further applications. We also use this connection to show that a similar relation can be derived when the fixed point is not thermal.

Original languageEnglish
Article number022118
Number of pages12
JournalPhysical Review A
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017


Dive into the research topics of 'Dynamical maps, quantum detailed balance, and the Petz recovery map'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this