Patrick P. Potts

Patrick P. Potts
University of Basel | UNIBAS · Department of Physics

Ph.D. in Physics

About

54
Publications
6,691
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1,333
Citations
Introduction
Patrick P. Potts (formerly Hofer) is leading the Quantum Thermodynamics Group in Basel, Switzerland. Patrick does research on Open Quantum Systems with a focus on Quantum Thermodynamics, Fluctuations, and , Non-classical Effects.
Additional affiliations
January 2018 - present
Lund University
Position
  • PostDoc Position
November 2016 - December 2017
University of Geneva
Position
  • PostDoc Position
January 2015 - December 2015
McGill University
Position
  • PhD Student (Visitor)

Publications

Publications (54)
Article
Full-text available
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 n...
Article
Fluctuation relations are powerful equalities that hold far from equilibrium. However, the standard approach to include measurement and feedback schemes may become inapplicable in certain situations, including continuous measurements, precise measurements of continuous variables, and feedback induced irreversibility. Here we overcome these shortcom...
Article
We introduce an experimental test for ruling out classical explanations for the statistics obtained when measuring arbitrary observables at arbitrary times using individual detectors. This test requires some trust in the measurements, represented by a few natural assumptions on the detectors. In quantum theory, the considered scenarios are well cap...
Preprint
Full-text available
Thermodynamic uncertainty relations quantify how the signal-to-noise ratio of a given observable is constraint by dissipation. Using an intimate connection to fluctuation relations, we extend thermodynamic uncertainty relations to scenarios which include measurement and feedback. Since measurement and feedback generally breaks time-reversal invaria...
Article
Full-text available
We theoretically investigate work extraction from quantum states via an engine. The latter consists of a superconducting circuit, where a LC-resonator is coupled to a Josephson junction. The oscillator state fuels the engine, providing energy absorbed by Cooper pairs, thus producing work in the form of an electrical current against an external volt...
Article
Measurement and feedback control are essential features of quantum science, with applications ranging from quantum technology protocols to information-to-work conversion in quantum thermodynamics. Theoretical descriptions of feedback control are typically given in terms of stochastic equations requiring numerical solutions, or are limited to linear...
Preprint
Full-text available
Detection of single, itinerant microwave photons is an important functionality for emerging quantum technology applications as well as of fundamental interest in quantum thermodynamics experiments on heat transport. In a recent experiment [W. Khan et al., Nat. Commun. 12, 5130 (2021)], it was demonstrated that a double quantum dot (DQD) coupled to...
Article
Fluctuations of thermodynamic observables, such as heat and work, contain relevant information on the underlying physical process. These fluctuations are however not taken into account in the traditional laws of thermodynamics. While the second law is extended to fluctuating systems by the celebrated fluctuation theorems, the first law is generally...
Article
Full-text available
Markovian master equations provide a versatile tool for describing open quantum systems when memory effects of the environment may be neglected. As these equations are of an approximate nature, they often do not respect the laws of thermodynamics when no secular approximation is performed in their derivation. Here we introduce a Markovian master eq...
Preprint
Full-text available
Measurement and feedback control are essential features of quantum science, with applications ranging from quantum technology protocols to information-to-work conversion in quantum thermodynamics. Theoretical descriptions of feedback control are typically given in terms of stochastic equations requiring numerical solutions, or are limited to linear...
Preprint
Full-text available
We theoretically investigate the extractable work in single molecule unfolding-folding experiments with applied feedback. Using a simple two-state model, we obtain a description of the full work distribution, from discrete to continuous feedback. The effect of the feedback is captured by a detailed fluctuation theorem, accounting for the informatio...
Article
Full-text available
Converting incoming photons to electrical current is the key operation principle of optical photodetectors and it enables a host of emerging quantum information technologies. The leading approach for continuous and efficient detection in the optical domain builds on semiconductor photodiodes. However, there is a paucity of efficient and continuous...
Preprint
Full-text available
Markovian master equations provide a versatile tool for describing open quantum systems when memory effects of the environment may be neglected. As these equations are of an approximate nature, they often do not respect the laws of thermodynamics when no secular approximation is performed in their derivation. Here we introduce a Markovian master eq...
Article
Full-text available
Nanoscale heat engines are subject to large fluctuations which affect their precision. The thermodynamic uncertainty relation (TUR) provides a trade-off between output power, fluctuations, and entropic cost. This trade-off may be overcome by systems exhibiting quantum coherence. This Letter provides a study of the TUR in a prototypical quantum heat...
Preprint
Full-text available
Nanoscale heat engines are subject to large fluctuations which affect their precision. The Thermodynamic Uncertainty Relation (TUR) provides a trade-off between output power, fluctuations and entropic cost. This trade-off may be overcome by systems exhibiting quantum coherence. This letter provides a study of the TUR in a prototypical quantum heat...
Preprint
Full-text available
Fluctuations of thermodynamic observables, such as heat and work, contain relevant information on the underlying physical process. These fluctuations are however not taken into account in the traditional laws of thermodynamics. While the second law is extended to fluctuating systems by the celebrated fluctuation theorems, the first law is generally...
Article
Full-text available
Thermal machines perform useful tasks, such as producing work, cooling, or heating by exchanging energy, and possibly additional conserved quantities such as particles, with reservoirs. Here we consider thermal machines that perform more than one useful task simultaneously, terming these hybrid thermal machines. We outline their restrictions impose...
Preprint
Full-text available
Single photon detectors are key for time-correlated photon counting applications [1] and enable a host of emerging optical quantum information technologies [2]. So far, the leading approach for continuous and efficient single-photon detection in the optical domain has been based on semiconductor photodiodes [3]. However, there is a paucity of effic...
Article
Full-text available
Precise thermometry is of wide importance in science and technology in general and in quantum systems in particular. Here, we investigate fundamental precision limits for thermometry on cold quantum systems, taking into account constraints due to finite measurement resolution. We derive a tight bound on the optimal precision scaling with temperatur...
Preprint
Full-text available
Thermal machines perform useful tasks--such as producing work, cooling, or heating--by exchanging energy, and possibly additional conserved quantities such as particles, with reservoirs. Here we consider thermal machines that perform more than one useful task simultaneously, terming these "hybrid thermal machines". We outline their restrictions imp...
Article
Full-text available
We consider a scheme for on-demand teleportation of a dual-rail electron qubit state, based on single-electron sources and detectors. The scheme has a maximal efficiency of 25%, which is limited both by the shared entangled state as well as the Bell-state measurement. We consider two experimental implementations, realizable with current technology....
Article
Full-text available
Converting information into work has, during the past decade, gained renewed interest as it gives insight into the relation between information theory and thermodynamics. Here, we theoretically investigate an implementation of Maxwell's demon in a double quantum dot and demonstrate how heat can be converted into work using only information. This is...
Preprint
We consider a scheme for on-demand teleportation of a dual-rail electron qubit state, based on single-electron sources and detectors. The scheme has a maximal efficiency of 25%, which is limited both by the shared entangled state as well as the Bell-state measurement. We consider two experimental implementations, realizable with current technology....
Preprint
Full-text available
Precise thermometry is of wide importance in science and technology in general and in quantum systems in particular. Here, we investigate fundamental precision limits for thermometry on cold quantum systems, taking into account constraints due to finite measurement resolution. We derive a tight bound on the optimal precision scaling with temperatur...
Preprint
Full-text available
Converting information into work has during the last decade gained renewed interest as it gives insight into the relation between information theory and thermodynamics. Here we theoretically investigate an implementation of Maxwell's demon in a double quantum dot and demonstrate how heat can be converted into work using only information. This is ac...
Article
Thermodynamic uncertainty relations quantify how the signal-to-noise ratio of a given observable is constrained by dissipation. Fluctuation relations generalize the second law of thermodynamics to stochastic processes. We show that any fluctuation relation directly implies a thermodynamic uncertainty relation, considerably increasing their range of...
Article
Full-text available
We consider an autonomous implementation of Maxwell's demon in a quantum dot architecture acting on a system without changing its number of particles or its energy. As in the original thought experiment, only the second law of thermodynamics is seemingly violated when disregarding the demon. The autonomous architecture allows us to compare descript...
Article
Full-text available
The trade-off between large power output, high efficiency and small fluctuations in the operation of heat engines has recently received interest in the context of thermodynamic uncertainty relations (TURs). Here we provide a concrete illustration of this trade-off by theoretically investigating the operation of a quantum point contact (QPC) with an...
Preprint
Full-text available
We consider an autonomous implementation of Maxwell's demon in a quantum dot architecture. As in the original thought experiment, only the second law of thermodynamics is seemingly violated when disregarding the demon. The autonomous architecture allows us to compare descriptions in terms of information to a more traditional, thermoelectric charact...
Preprint
Full-text available
The theory of quantum thermodynamics investigates how the concepts of heat, work, and temperature can be carried over to the quantum realm, where fluctuations and randomness are fundamentally unavoidable. Of particular practical relevance is the investigation of quantum thermal machines: Machines that use the flow of heat in order to perform some u...
Preprint
Full-text available
The trade-off between large power output, high efficiency and small fluctuations in the operation of heat engines has recently received interest in the context of thermodynamic uncertainty relations (TURs). Here we provide a concrete illustration of this trade-off by theoretically investigating the operation of a quantum point contact (QPC) with an...
Preprint
Full-text available
The trade-off between large power output, high efficiency and small fluctuations in the operation of heat engines has recently received interest in the context of thermodynamic uncertainty relations (TURs). Here we provide a concrete illustration of this trade-off by theoretically investigating the operation of a quantum point contact (QPC) with an...
Preprint
Full-text available
Von Neumann measurements can be described naturally in terms of the Keldysh quasi-probability distribution (KQPD), and the imprecision and backaction exerted by the measurement apparatus. Here we introduce a classical (hidden-variable) model for von Neumann measurements. Under a few natural assumptions, we derive an experimentally accessible inequa...
Preprint
Full-text available
Fluctuation theorems are powerful equalities that hold far from equilibrium. However, the standard approach to include measurement and feedback schemes may become inapplicable in certain situations, including continuous measurements, precise measurements of continuous variables, and feedback induced irreversibility. Here we overcome these shortcomi...
Article
Full-text available
Absorption refrigerators are autonomous thermal machines that harness the spontaneous flow of heat from a hot bath into the environment in order to perform cooling. Here we discuss quantum realizations of absorption refrigerators in two different settings: namely, cavity and circuit quantum electrodynamics. We first provide a unified description of...
Chapter
Absorption refrigerators are autonomous thermal machines that harness the spontaneous flow of heat from a hot bath into the environment in order to perform cooling. Here we discuss quantum realizations of absorption refrigerators in two different settings: namely, cavity and circuit quantum electrodynamics. We first provide a unified description of...
Article
Full-text available
The study of quantum thermal machines, and more generally of open quantum systems, often relies on master equations. On the one hand, there is the widely used, but often criticized, local approach, where machine sub-systems locally couple to thermal baths. On the other hand, in the more established global approach, thermal baths couple to global de...
Article
Full-text available
We propose the use of a quantum thermal machine for low-temperature thermometry. A hot thermal reservoir coupled to the machine allows for simultaneously cooling the sample while determining its temperature without knowing the model-dependent coupling constants. In its most simple form, the proposed scheme works for all thermal machines which perfo...
Article
Full-text available
We consider the Keldysh quasi-probability distribution (KQPD) to describe dynamic systems. This distribution provides a measurement-independent description of the observables of interest and their time-evolution. Nevertheless, positive probability distributions for measurement outcomes can be obtained from the KQPD by taking into account the effect...
Article
Full-text available
An implementation of a small quantum absorption refrigerator in a circuit QED architecture is proposed. The setup consists of three harmonic oscillators coupled to a Josephson unction. The refrigerator is autonomous in the sense that it does not require any external control for cooling, but only thermal contact between the oscillators and heat bath...
Thesis
Full-text available
We theoretically investigate questions regarding the controlled emission and entanglement of individual electrons in mesoscopic circuits, the statistics of current fluctuations and electron waiting times for phase-coherent quantum transport, and thermal machines such as heat engines and refrigerators at the nano-scale. Chapter 2 focuses on dynamic...
Article
Full-text available
We review our recent proposals for the on-demand generation of entangled few-electron states using dynamic single-electron sources. The generation of entanglement can be traced back to the single-electron entanglement produced by quantum point contacts acting as electronic beam splitters. The coherent partitioning of a single electron leads to enta...
Article
Full-text available
Motivated by recent progress in electron quantum optics, we revisit the question of single-electron entanglement, specifically whether the state of a single electron in a superposition of two separate spatial modes should be considered entangled. We first discuss a gedanken experiment with single-electron sources and detectors, and demonstrate dete...
Article
Full-text available
We propose and analyze a simple mesoscopic quantum heat engine that exhibits both high-power and high-efficiency. The system consists of a biased Josephson junction coupled to two microwave cavities, with each cavity coupled to a thermal bath. Resonant Cooper pair tunnelling occurs with the exchange of photons between cavities, and a temperature di...
Article
Full-text available
The Keldysh-ordered full counting statistics is a quasi-probability distribution describing the fluctuations of a time-integrated quantum observable. While it is well known that this distribution can fail to be positive, the interpretation and origin of this negativity has been somewhat unclear. Here, we show how the full counting statistics can be...
Article
Full-text available
We evaluate the distribution of waiting times between electrons emitted by a driven mesoscopic capacitor. Based on a wave packet approach we obtain analytic expressions for the electronic waiting time distribution and the joint distribution of subsequent waiting times. These semi-classical results are compared to a full quantum treatment based on F...
Article
Full-text available
We evaluate the joint distributions of electron waiting times in coherent conductors described by scattering theory. Successive electron waiting times in a single-channel conductor are found to be correlated due to the fermionic statistics encoded in the many-body state. Our formalism allows us also to investigate the waiting times between charge t...
Article
Full-text available
We theoretically investigate the thermoelectric properties of heat engines based on Mach-Zehnder interferometers. The energy dependence of the transmission amplitudes in such setups arises from a difference in the interferometer arm lengths. Any thermoelectric response is thus of purely quantum mechanical origin. In addition to an experimentally es...
Article
Full-text available
We investigate a Mach-Zehnder interferometer driven by a time-dependent voltage. Motivated by recent experiments, we focus on a train of Lorentzian voltage pulses which we compare to a sinusoidal and a constant voltage. We discuss the visibilities of Aharonov-Bohm oscillations in the current and in the noise. For the current, we find a strikingly d...
Article
Full-text available
We propose an ac current source that can be tuned from a pure charge to a pure spin current source. The device consists of two mesoscopic capacitors attached to a two-dimensional strip of a topological insulator. The change from charge to spin current is controlled by an offset in the top gate potentials that drive the capacitors. In addition to th...
Article
Full-text available
We propose a single-particle source which emits into the helical edge states of a two-dimensional quantum spin Hall insulator. Without breaking time-reversal symmetry, this source acts like a pair of noiseless single-electron emitters which each inject separately into a chiral edge state. By locally breaking time-reversal symmetry, the source becom...
Thesis
Full-text available
We investigate the superfluid drag that occurs between the components of a two-species Bose-Einstein condensate in quasi two-dimensional optical lattices. This drag couples the two different superfluid velocities in the free energy, which are used to describe such a system. We derive an analytic expression of the drag in the limit of weak interac-...
Article
Full-text available
We study two-species Bose-Einstein condensates in quasi two-dimensional optical lattices of varying geometry and potential depth. Based on the numerically exact Bloch and Wannier functions obtained using the plane-wave expansion method, we quantify the drag (entrainment coupling) between the condensate components. This drag originates from the (sho...

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Project
The fields of stochastic and quantum thermodynamics generalize the theory of thermodynamics to a regime where fluctuations and measurements play a fundamental role. Powerful results have been established in these fields, including fluctuation theorems and thermodynamic uncertainty relations. Furthermore, the connection between information and entropy becomes particularly relevant on the nanoscale. This has resulted in a number of insights based on realizations of established thought experiments, such as Maxwell’s demon and Szilard’s engine. Due to their high degree of control, small electronic systems provide ideal candidates to investigate thermodynamics on the nanoscale. In particular, all ingredients required to investigate heat and energy transport, as well as the thermodynamics of information, are available. This Special Issue aims at providing a focus on modern developments in these highly exciting topics related to energy, entropy, and information in nano- and quantum-electronics. https://www.mdpi.com/journal/entropy/special_issues/Nano_Quantum_Electronics