Abstract: Do systems far from thermal equilibrium have features that have no analogue in equilibrium systems? Are there generic features that would be model-independent? We address these questions by studying metastable decay. The familiar decay mechanisms are tunneling and thermal activation. We show that periodically modulated systems can decay via a different mechanism, which we call quantum activation. The decay rate displays scaling behavior near critical parameter values where metastable vibrational states disappear. We also show that the tunnel splitting of symmetric and antisymmetric vibrational states oscillates and changes sign with varying parameters. The results impose limitations on the characteristics of bifurcation amplifiers used in quantum measurements.
Quantum activation and quantum measurements
KIT - Campus South - Wolfgang-Gaede-Str.1
Prof. Dr. Mark Dykman