• Register
PhysicsOverflow is a next-generation academic platform for physicists and astronomers, including a community peer review system and a postgraduate-level discussion forum analogous to MathOverflow.

Welcome to PhysicsOverflow! PhysicsOverflow is an open platform for community peer review and graduate-level Physics discussion.

Please help promote PhysicsOverflow ads elsewhere if you like it.


PO is now at the Physics Department of Bielefeld University!

New printer friendly PO pages!

Migration to Bielefeld University was successful!

Please vote for this year's PhysicsOverflow ads!

Please do help out in categorising submissions. Submit a paper to PhysicsOverflow!

... see more

Tools for paper authors

Submit paper
Claim Paper Authorship

Tools for SE users

Search User
Reclaim SE Account
Request Account Merger
Nativise imported posts
Claim post (deleted users)
Import SE post

Users whose questions have been imported from Physics Stack Exchange, Theoretical Physics Stack Exchange, or any other Stack Exchange site are kindly requested to reclaim their account and not to register as a new user.

Public \(\beta\) tools

Report a bug with a feature
Request a new functionality
404 page design
Send feedback


(propose a free ad)

Site Statistics

205 submissions , 163 unreviewed
5,054 questions , 2,207 unanswered
5,345 answers , 22,719 comments
1,470 users with positive rep
818 active unimported users
More ...

  Explicit construction for unitary extensions of CPTP maps?

+ 12 like - 0 dislike

Given a completely positive and trace preserving map $\Phi : \textrm{L}(\mathcal{H})\to\textrm{L}(\mathcal{G})$, it is clear by the Kraus representation theorem that there exist $A_k \in \text{L}(\mathcal{H}, \mathcal{G})$ such that $\Phi(\rho) = \sum_k A_k \rho A_k^\dagger$ for all density operators $\rho$ on $\mathcal{H}$. (I'll consider the special case $\mathcal{H} = \mathcal{G}$ for simplicity.)

If we use then the system+environment model to express this action as $\Phi(\rho)=\text{Tr}_{\mathcal{H}_E} (Y\rho Y^\dagger)$ for an isometry $Y$ from $\mathcal{H}$ to $\mathcal{H}\otimes\mathcal{H}_E$, where $\mathcal{H}_E$ is an ancilla modelling the environment, what is an explicit construction for a unitary $U$ that has the same action on inputs of the form $\rho\otimes\left|0\right>\left<0\right|_E$? That is, how can I construct an explicit dilation of the map to a unitary acting on a larger space? I understand that this is possible by Steinspring's dilation theorem, but actually constructing an explicit form for the dialated unitary I have had much less success with.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
asked Oct 29, 2011 in Theoretical Physics by Chris Granade (260 points) [ no revision ]
There used to be Joe Fitzsimmons' answer here, what happened?

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
@Marcin: I deleted it because there was an error in the proof.

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)

1 Answer

+ 10 like - 0 dislike

The isometry $Y:\mathcal H\rightarrow \mathcal H_E \otimes \mathcal H$ is $$ Y=\left(\begin{array}{c} A_1 \\ \vdots \\ A_K \end{array}\right) = \sum_k |k\rangle \otimes A_k\ . $$ Clearly, $$ \mathrm{tr}_E(Y\rho Y^\dagger) = \sum_{kl} \mathrm{tr}(|k\rangle\langle l|) A_k\rho A_l^\dagger = \sum_k A_k \rho A_k^\dagger \ , $$ as desired. Moreover, $Y$ is an isometry, $Y^\dagger Y=I$, i.e., its columns are orthonormal, which follows from the condition $\sum_k A_k^\dagger A_k=I$ (i.e., the map is trace preserving).

Now if you want to obtain a unitary which acts on $|0\rangle\langle 0|\otimes \rho$ the same way $Y$ acts on $\rho$, you have to extend the matrix $Y$ to a unitary by adding orthogonal column vectors. For instance, you can pick linearly independent vectors from your favorite basis and orthonormalize. (Clearly, $U$ is highly non-unique, as its action on environment states other than $|0\rangle$ is not well defined.)

This post has been migrated from (A51.SE)
answered Oct 30, 2011 by Norbert Schuch (290 points) [ no revision ]

Your answer

Please use answers only to (at least partly) answer questions. To comment, discuss, or ask for clarification, leave a comment instead.
To mask links under text, please type your text, highlight it, and click the "link" button. You can then enter your link URL.
Please consult the FAQ for as to how to format your post.
This is the answer box; if you want to write a comment instead, please use the 'add comment' button.
Live preview (may slow down editor)   Preview
Your name to display (optional):
Privacy: Your email address will only be used for sending these notifications.
Anti-spam verification:
If you are a human please identify the position of the character covered by the symbol $\varnothing$ in the following word:
Then drag the red bullet below over the corresponding character of our banner. When you drop it there, the bullet changes to green (on slow internet connections after a few seconds).
Please complete the anti-spam verification

user contributions licensed under cc by-sa 3.0 with attribution required

Your rights