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Day November 13, 2010

PT-symmetric quantum state discrimination

Carl M. Bender, Dorje C. Brody, Joao Caldeira, Bernard K. Meister

Suppose that a system is known to be in one of two quantum states, $|\psi_1 > $ or $|\psi_2 >$. If these states are not orthogonal, then in conventional quantum mechanics it is impossible with one measurement to determine with certainty which state the system is in. However, because a non-Hermitian PT-symmetric Hamiltonian determines the inner product that is appropriate for the Hilbert space of physical states, it is always possible to choose this inner product so that the two states $|\psi_1 > $ and $|\psi_2 > $ are orthogonal. Thus, quantum state discrimination can, in principle, be achieved with a single measurement.
High Energy Physics – Theory (hep-th); Mathematical Physics (math-ph); Quantum Physics (quant-ph)