Real Time Dynamics of Dissipative Quantum Systems.
The first part of this thesis motivates a real time approach to the dynamics of dissipative quantum systems. We review previous imaginary time methods for calculating escape rates and discuss their applications to the analysis of data in macroscopic quantum tunneling experiments. In tunneling experiments on heavily damped Superconducting Quantum Interference Devices, the instanton method gave results that compare reasonably well with data. In tunneling experiments on weakly damped Current Biased Josephson Junctions, two problems arise. First, the classical limit of the instanton result disagrees with the classical rate of thermal activation. Second, the instanton method cannot predict the microwave enhancement of escape rates. In the third chapter, we discuss our real time approach to the dynamics of dissipative systems in terms of a kinetic equation for the reduced density matrix. We demonstrate some known equilibrium properties of dissipative systems through the kinetic equation and derive the bath induced widths and energy shifts. In the low damping limit, the kinetic equation reduces to a much simpler master equation. The classical limit of the master equation is completely equivalent to the Fokker-Planck equation that describes thermal activation. In the fourth chapter, we apply the master equation to the problem of tunneling and resonance enhancement of tunneling in weakly damped current biased Josephson junctions. In the classical regime, microwaves of the appropriate frequency induce resonances between many neighboring levels and an asymmetrical resonance peak is measured. We can calibrate the junction parameters by fitting the stationary solution of the master equation to the classical resonance data. In the quantum regime, the stationary solution of the master equation, based on the junction parameters determined in the classical regime, predicts well-resolved resonance peaks which agree very well with the observed data. We also demonstrate the effects of loading a Josephson junction with a variable length transmission line.
- Pub Date:
- Physics: Condensed Matter