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Concept# Wave function collapse

Summary

In quantum mechanics, wave function collapse occurs when a wave function—initially in a superposition of several eigenstates—reduces to a single eigenstate due to interaction with the external world. This interaction is called an observation, and is the essence of a measurement in quantum mechanics, which connects the wave function with classical observables such as position and momentum. Collapse is one of the two processes by which quantum systems evolve in time; the other is the continuous evolution governed by the Schrödinger equation. Collapse is a black box for a thermodynamically irreversible interaction with a classical environment.
Calculations of quantum decoherence show that when a quantum system interacts with the environment, the superpositions apparently reduce to mixtures of classical alternatives. Significantly, the combined wave function of the system and environment continue to obey the Schrödinger equation throughout this apparent collapse. More importantly, this i

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Two objects are entangled when their quantum mechanical wavefunctions cannot be written in a separable product form. Entangling dissimilar quantum objects, or hybridization, has been suggested as a promising route to efficient quantum information processors, but mostly realized on a limited scale. Hybrid nuclear-electronic many-body systems remain a largely unexplored challenge to both experiments and theories. The prototypical transverse-field Ising ferromagnet LiHoF4 is an ideal platform to address this issue. The Ising model is considered as an archetype both for the investigation of quantum criticality and for the evaluation of quantum simulators. The hyperfine coupling strength of a Ho ion is exceptionally large, promoting a strong hybridization or entanglement between the nuclear and electronic moments. The magnetic coupling between the Ho ions that leads to ferromagnetic ordering is predominantly through long-range dipole interactions, while nearest-neighbor exchange interaction is negligibly weak. Applying a transverse field induces a zero temperature quantum phase transition driven by quantum fluctuations. Altogether LiHoF4 represents a unique nuclear-electronic quantum magnet, whose wavefunctions can be readily obtained by diagonalizing the Hamiltonian using the mean-field approximation. In this thesis we develop an experimental setup to probe the entangled nuclear-electronic states in a model transverse-field Ising system LiHoF4. Using magnetic resonance the field and temperature evolution of the nuclear-electronic states are successfully traced across the whole phase diagram. We develop a theoretical framework based on mean-field calculations which provides close agreement with the experimental observations. Having established experimentally that the mean-field wavefunctions are an excellent approximation of the actual wavefunction, we used them to calculate the ground-state entanglement entropy between the electronic and nuclear magnetic moments. We find that the entanglement entropy between the nuclear and electronic moments exhibits a peak at the quantum phase transition. This suggests that the electronic entanglement is encoded onto each nuclear-electronic state. Our results pave the way for new theoretical and experimental investigations of quantum entanglement.

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We present an efficient procedure for constructing nonempirical hybrid functionals to accurately predict band gaps of extended systems. We determine mixing parameters by enforcing the generalized Koopmans’ condition on localized electron states, which are achieved by inserting an optimized potential probe. Application of this scheme to a large set of materials yields band gaps with a mean error of 0.30 eV with respect to experiment. Next, we consider a perturbative one-shot approach in which the single-particle eigenvalues are calculated with the wave functions obtained at the semilocal level. In this way, the computational cost is reduced by ∼85% without loss of accuracy. The scheme is found to be robust upon consideration of different defect species and functional forms.

2022,

2010