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Beyond the density operator and Tr(ρA): Exploiting the higher-order statistics of random-coefficient pure states for quantum information processing

by   Yannick Deville, et al.
Aix-Marseille Université

Two types of states are widely used in quantum mechanics, namely (deterministic-coefficient) pure states and statistical mixtures. A density operator can be associated with each of them. We here address a third type of states, that we previously introduced in a more restricted framework. These states generalize pure ones by replacing each of their deterministic ket coefficients by a random variable. We therefore call them Random-Coefficient Pure States, or RCPS. We analyze their properties and their relationships with both types of usual states. We show that RCPS contain much richer information than the density operator and mean of observables that we associate with them. This occurs because the latter operator only exploits the second-order statistics of the random state coefficients, whereas their higher-order statistics contain additional information. That information can be accessed in practice with the multiple-preparation procedure that we propose for RCPS, by using second-order and higher-order statistics of associated random probabilities of measurement outcomes. Exploiting these higher-order statistics opens the way to a very general approach for performing advanced quantum information processing tasks. We illustrate the relevance of this approach with a generic example, dealing with the estimation of parameters of a quantum process and thus related to quantum process tomography. This parameter estimation is performed in the non-blind (i.e. supervised) or blind (i.e. unsupervised) mode. We show that this problem cannot be solved by using only the density operator ρof an RCPS and the associated mean value Tr(ρA) of the operator A that corresponds to the considered physical quantity. We succeed in solving this problem by exploiting a fourth-order statistical parameter of state coefficients, in addition to second-order statistics. Numerical tests validate this result.


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