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A new measure of non-classical correlations is introduced and characterized. It tests the ability of using a state ρ of a composite system AB as a probe for a quantum illumination task (e.g. see Lloyd 2008 Science 321 1463), in which one is asked to remotely discriminate between the two following scenarios: (i) either nothing happens to the probe, or (ii) the subsystem A is transformed via a local unitary R A whose properties are partially unspecified when producing ρ. This new measure can be seen as the discrete version of the recently introduced interferometric power measure (Girolami et al 2013 e-print arXiv:1309.1472) and, at least for the case in which A is a qubit, it is shown to coincide (up to an irrelevant scaling factor) with the local quantum uncertainty measure of Girolami, Tufarelli and Adesso (2013 Phys. Rev. Lett. 110 240402). Analytical expressions are derived which allow us to formally prove that, within the set of separable configurations, the maximum value of our non-classicality measure is achieved over the set of quantum-classical states (i.e. states ρ which admit a statistical unravelling where each element of the associated ensemble is distinguishable via local measures on B).

We provide a versatile upper bound on the number of maximally entangled qubits, or private bits, shared by two parties via a generic adaptive communication protocol over a quantum network when the use of classical communication is not restricted. Although our result follows the idea of Azuma et al (2016 Nat. Commun. 7 13523) of splitting the network into two parts, our approach relaxes their strong restriction, consisting of the use of a single entanglement measure in the quantification of the maximum amount of entanglement generated by the channels. In particular, in our bound the measure can be chosen on a channel-by-channel basis, in order to make it as tight as possible. This enables us to apply the relative entropy of entanglement, which often gives a state-of-the-art upper bound, on every Choi-simulable channel in the network, even when the other channels do not satisfy this property. We also develop tools to compute, or bound, the max-relative entropy of entanglement for channels that are invariant under phase rotations. In particular, we present an analytical formula for the max-relative entropy of entanglement of the qubit amplitude damping channel. IntroductionWhenever two parties, say Alice and Bob, want to communicate by using a quantum channel, its noise unavoidably limits their communication efficiency [1]. In the limit of many channel uses, their asymptotic optimal performance can be quantified by the channel capacity, which represents the supremum of the number of qubits/bits that can be faithfully transmitted per channel use. Obtaining an exact expression for this quantity is typically far from trivial. Indeed, in addition to the difficulty of studying the asymptotic behaviour of the channel, the value of the capacity also depends on the task Alice and Bob want to perform, as well as on the free resources available to them [1]. Two representative tasks, which will be considered in our paper, involve the generation and distribution of a string of shared private bits (pbits) [2,3] or of maximally entangled states (ebits) [4]. These are known to be fundamental resources for more complex protocols, such as secure classsical communication [5,6], quantum teleportation [7], and quantum state merging [8]. An example of free resource involves the possibility of exchanging classical information over a public classical channel, such as a telephone line or over the internet. Depending on the restrictions on this, the capacity is said to be assisted by zero, forward, backward, or two-way classical communication [1]. In this paper we will focus on the last option, that is, no restriction will be imposed on the use of classical communication.Although the capacity of a quantum channel is by definition an abstract and theoretical quantity, it is also practically useful in that it can be compared with the performance of known transmission schemes. This comparison could then give an indication on the extent of improvements that could be expected in the future. From this perspective, similar conclusions could be obt...

Interference lies at the heart of the behavior of classical and quantum light. It is thus crucial to understand the boundaries between which interference patterns can be explained by a classical electromagnetic description of light and which, on the other hand, can only be understood with a proper quantum mechanical approach. While the case of two-mode interference has received a lot of attention, the multimode case has not yet been fully explored. Here we study a general scenario of intensity interferometry: we derive a bound on the average correlations between pairs of output intensities for the classical wavelike model of light, and we show how it can be violated in a quantum framework. As a consequence, this violation acts as a nonclassicality witness, able to detect the presence of sources with sub-Poissonian photon-number statistics. We also develop a criterion that can certify the impossibility of dividing a given interferometer into two independent subblocks. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.213602 Hong, Ou, and Mandel (HOM) discovered that if two independent and indistinguishable photons, in pure quantum states, impinge on the two input ports of a balanced beam splitter, they always bunch together and exit the apparatus from the same output port [1]. This simple effect has many consequences, e.g., in distinguishability testing [2], linear-optical quantum computing [3], entanglement detection [4] or swapping [5], and metrology [6][7][8][9]. The nonclassicality of this phenomenon can be well understood by repeating the experiment many times, and by recording the intensities I 1 , I 2 at the two output ports: labeling the average over many runs by h·i, the correlation function,will be zero in the ideal case, because on each run the intensity at one of the two ports will vanish. G 12 has a well-defined classical limit, which makes it a suitable candidate to use in distinguishing quantum light beams from classical ones. We can either consider completely distinguishable photons, i.e., single excitations occupying orthogonal space-time modes, or pulses of classical light, described by electromagnetic fields. In both cases, if they are emitted by statistically independent sources and injected into the beam splitter, G 12 is constrained to be greater than or equal to 1=2 [10,11]. Therefore, the value G 12 ¼ 0 obtained in the ideal HOM effect represents a strong signature of nonclassicality.Several authors have investigated interference effects of noninteracting particles with the aim of reproducing or generalizing HOM's result to different situations (see Refs. [12,13]) not necessarily constrained to linear optics [14][15][16][17][18]. However, photonics remains the physical platform of choice for these studies, since it is now possible to prepare and manipulate several photons in ambient laboratory conditions, which can then be injected into multimode interferometers [19][20][21][22][23][24][25][26]. The recent investigations of many-particle interference effects have revealed a need for a deeper understanding ...

We present a quantifier of non-classical correlations for bipartite, multi-mode Gaussian states. It is derived from the Discriminating Strength measure, introduced for finite dimensional systems in A. Farace et al., New. J. Phys. 16, 073010 (2014). As the latter the new measure exploits the Quantum Chernoff Bound to gauge the susceptibility of the composite system with respect to local perturbations induced by unitary gates extracted from a suitable set of allowed transformations (the latter being identified by posing some general requirements). Closed expressions are provided for the case of two-mode Gaussian states obtained by squeezing or by linearly mixing via a beamsplitter a factorized two-mode thermal state. For these density matrices, we study how non-classical correlations are related with the entanglement present in the system and with its total photon number.

We consider an instance of "black-box" quantum metrology in the Gaussian framework, where we aim to estimate the amount of squeezing applied on an input probe, without previous knowledge on the phase of the applied squeezing. By taking the quantum Fisher information (QFI) as the figure of merit, we evaluate its average and variance with respect to this phase in order to identify probe states that yield good precision for many different squeezing directions. We first consider the case of single-mode Gaussian probes with the same energy, and find that pure squeezed states maximize the average quantum Fisher information (AvQFI) at the cost of a performance that oscillates strongly as the squeezing direction is changed. Although the variance can be brought to zero by correlating the probing system with a reference mode, the maximum AvQFI cannot be increased in the same way. A different scenario opens if one takes into account the effects of photon losses: coherent states represent the optimal single-mode choice when losses exceed a certain threshold and, moreover, correlated probes can now yield larger AvQFI values than all single-mode states, on top of having zero variance.

One goal in the quantum-walk research is the exploitation of the intrinsic quantum nature of multiple walkers, in order to achieve the full computational power of the model. Here we study the behaviour of two non-interacting particles performing a quantum walk on the line when the possibility of lattice imperfections, in the form of missing links, is considered. We investigate two regimes, statical and dynamical percolation, that correspond to different time scales for the imperfections evolution with respect to the quantum-walk one. By studying the qualitative behaviour of three two-particle quantities for different probabilities of having missing bonds, we argue that the chosen symmetry under particle-exchange of the input state strongly affects the output of the walk, even in noisy and highly non-ideal regimes. We provide evidence against the possibility of gathering information about the walkers indistinguishability from the observation of bunching phenomena in the output distribution, in all those situations that require a comparison between averaged quantities. Although the spread of the walk is not substantially changed by the addition of a second particle, we show that the presence of multiple walkers can be beneficial for a procedure to estimate the probability of having a broken link.

We develop a nonclassicality criterion for the interference of three delayed, but otherwise identical, light fields in a three-mode Bell interferometer. We do so by comparing the prediction of quantum mechanics with those of a classical framework in which independent sources emit electric fields with random phases. In particular, we evaluate third-order correlations among output intensities as a function of the delays, and show how the presence of a correlation revival for small delays cannot be explained by the classical model of light. The observation of a revival is thus a nonclassicality signature, which can be achieved only by sources with a photon-number statistics that is highly sub-Poissonian. Our analysis provides strong evidence for the nonclassicality of the experiment discussed by Menssen et al., [A. J. Menssen et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 153603 (2017)], and shows how a collective "triad" phase affects the interference of any three or more light fields, irrespective of their quantum or classical character.

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