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A reversible theory of entanglement and its relation to the second law

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CQC seminar

Entanglement is central both to the foundations of quantum theory and, as a novel resource, to quantum information science. The theory of entanglement establishes basic laws, such as the non-increase of entanglement under local operations, that govern its manipulation and aims to draw from them formal analogies to thermodynamics and the second law. However, while in the second law the entropy uniquely determines whether a state is adiabatically accessible from another, the manipulation of entanglement under local operations exhibits a fundamental irreversibility which prevents the existence of such an order. In this talk it will be shown that a reversible theory of entanglement and a rigorous relationship with thermodynamics may be established when one considers all non-entangling transformations. The role of entropy and the second law is taken by the asymptotic relative entropy of entanglement and the basic law of entanglement. The usefulness of this new approach to general resource theories and to quantum information theory will be discussed. The talk is based on a joint work with Martin Plenio.

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