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Scientific article
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English

Fundamental limits on low-temperature quantum thermometry with finite resolution

Published inQuantum, vol. 3, 161
Publication date2019
Abstract

While the ability to measure low temperatures accurately in quantum systems is important in a wide range of experiments, the possibilities and the fundamental limits of quantum thermometry are not yet fully understood theoretically. Here we develop a general approach to low-temperature quantum thermometry, taking into account restrictions arising not only from the sample but also from the measurement process. We derive a fundamental bound on the minimal uncertainty for any temperature measurement that has a finite resolution. A similar bound can be obtained from the third law of thermodynamics. Moreover, we identify a mechanism enabling sub-exponential scaling, even in the regime of finite resolution. We illustrate this effect in the case of thermometry on a fermionic tight-binding chain with access to only two lattice sites, where we find a quadratic divergence of the uncertainty. We also give illustrative examples of ideal quantum gases and a square-lattice Ising model, highlighting the role of phase transitions.

Citation (ISO format)
POTTS, Patrick P., BRASK, Jonatan, BRUNNER, Nicolas. Fundamental limits on low-temperature quantum thermometry with finite resolution. In: Quantum, 2019, vol. 3, p. 161. doi: 10.22331/q-2019-07-09-161
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Article (Accepted version)
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ISSN of the journal2521-327X
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