EXPLOITING RELATIVITY FOR QUANTUM INFORMATION THEORY

Lead Research Organisation: University of Nottingham
Department Name: Sch of Mathematical Sciences

Abstract

My research programme is the study of how relativistic effects can be exploited to improve quantum information tasks, a key topic of immense technological importance already today and more so for the next decades. The vantage point of these investigations is that the world is fundamentally both quantum and relativistic, and that these facts are immensely useful for the design of communication devices that are absolutely safe from eavesdropping, and of quantum computers that can quickly perform difficult computational tasks which overwhelm any classically imaginable computer. Indeed, impressive technological achievements and promises have already been derived from taking seriously solely the quantum aspects of matter: quantum cryptography and communication have become a technical reality in recent years, but the practical construction of a quantum computer still requires to understand better how to efficiently store, manipulate and read information, without prohibitively large disturbances from the environment. Throwing relativity into the equation fundamentally changes the entire game, as I could show in a series of research papers, one of which was featured in a generally accessible Science article highlighting my work (Cho, Science 2005). I propose to push this exciting line of theoretical research to the point where relativistic effects in quantum information theory can be exploited technologically.Far from yielding only quantitative corrections, relativity plays a dominant role in the qualitative behaviour of many physical systems used to implement quantum information tasks in the laboratory. The prototypical example is provided by any system involving light, be it for the transmission or manipulation of quantum information. There is no such thing as a non-relativistic approximation to light quanta, so-called photons, since these always travel at the speed of light. While relativistic quantum theory, commonly known as quantum field theory, is a very well studied subject in foundational particle physics, research in quantum information theory selectively focused almost exclusively on those aspects one can study without relativity. Thus both unexpected obstacles (such as a relativistic degradation of quantum entanglement) and unimagined possibilities for quantum information theory (such as improved quantum cryptography and hypersensitive quantum measurement devices) have gone unnoticed. The relevance of these insights, which together with co-workers, I afforded over the past few years, are evidenced by the amount of work by other researchers recognizing and building on my work. Indeed, the impact of my research extends beyond pure quantum information theory, and applications to foundational questions in cosmology and black hole physics have been found.The research I propose to complete during my Fellowship aims at providing comprehensive answers to foundational, theoretical and technological aspects of relativistic quantum information theory, exploiting and building on the intriguing results obtained so far. My overall aspiration and vision is to ultimately provide concrete solutions to key problems in the field of quantum information theory.

Publications

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Adesso G. (2009) Correlation loss and multipartite entanglement across a black hole horizon in Quantum Information and Computation

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Ahmadi M (2014) Quantum metrology for relativistic quantum fields in Physical Review D

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Alsing P (2012) Observer-dependent entanglement in Classical and Quantum Gravity

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Aspachs M (2010) Optimal Quantum Estimation of the Unruh-Hawking Effect in Physical Review Letters

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Borrelli M (2012) Dynamics of atom-atom correlations in the Fermi problem in New Journal of Physics

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Bruschi D (2013) Time evolution techniques for detectors in relativistic quantum information in Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical

Related Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Award Value
EP/G00496X/1 09/03/2009 30/06/2009 £527,372
EP/G00496X/2 Transfer EP/G00496X/1 01/08/2009 30/09/2014 £753,504
 
Title Short film "Hierarchy Lost" 
Description Andrzej Dragan and Ivette Fuentes collaborated in the overlap of science an art to produce a short film as part of the outreach program of this grant. The film is about a scientist making an amazing discovery: he finds himself in his work. Indeed the movie aims at transmitting through images the strong emotions behind scientific discovery. It was made in collaboration with approximately 40 artists, including W. Pokromski (Schindler's List, Perfume, etc.). Ivette Fuentes contributed to this film by helping Andrzej Dragan conceive the story, develop and write the script. 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2014 
Impact The film was submitted to the Foundational Questions Institute video contest "Show me the Physics" 
URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYrBDBNih9w
 
Description The impact on the broader scientific community and general public has already been evident. In particular, my work gained plenty of media attention (New Scientist, The Conversation, Dvice, etc). Our articles were published in high impact journals such as PRL, NJP and Sci. Rep. My team and I presented our work at prestigious international conferences and at leading research centers such as Cambridge, Vienna, Queensland, among many others. We participated in a number of outreach activities including producing and participating in videos, presenting public talks, mentions in the written media, creating a webpage Twitter and several Facebook groups to disseminate our results to the general public. The scientific community will benefit from the mathematical tool and techniques that we developed in quantum metrology, quantum information theory, quantum field theory in curved space-time, thermometry, gravitational wave detection, etc. I was invited to give public lectures about my findings in this project to the New Scientist Live event in 1018 and the New Scientist Instant expert day on quantum physics in 2017. Due to my work in the overlap of quantum information and general relativity, Sir Roger Penrose and James Tagg invited me to be founding member and Director of Physics of the Roger Penrose Institute. The physics branch will open in Nottingham in 2018.
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software)
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

 
Description Bridging the Gaps
Amount £42,030 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2012 
End 01/2013
 
Description INSPIRE Award
Amount £49,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 08/2014 
End 03/2016
 
Description International Exchanges Award,
Amount £5,984 (GBP)
Organisation The Royal Society 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2013 
End 01/2014
 
Description New Directions Research Award
Amount £300,000 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 03/2013 
End 09/2014
 
Description Panel Chair 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Decisions where made on grants and fellowships obtaining EPSRC funding
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Panel Member at Annual Meeting of the German Female Physicists Saarbruecken, Germany 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact I gave my views on how it is like to be a female working in Physics in England.

I participated in a number of interesting discussions about the role of women in science.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Panel member 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Decisions where made on what grant and Fellowship applications would obtain EPSRC funding
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Panel member and project reviewer 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Decisions where made on which projects would obtain European funding

Decisions where made on which projects would obtain European funding.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014