Renato Renner
Download all documents (zip, 13 MB).
The QIT group organizes one of the proseminars for the
Institute of Theoretical Physics, spring 2009. The topic is the role of
information in statistical mechanics.
This is the main website for the module.
Assignment of topics (View with Firefox, not Explorer)  
Topic 
References 
Talk Date 
Student 
Supervisor 
Introduction to information theory 

Classical information theory 
Shannon, 1948 “A Mathematical Theory of Communication.” Cover, Thomas, "Elements of Information theory", Wiley, (2006). 
Mon 2 March (2009) 
Adrian Hutter 
Roger Colbeck 
Quantum information theory 
Nielsen, Chuang, Quantum computation and information, Cambridge, (2000). 
Mon 2 Mar 
Lorenzo Devittori 
Roger Colbeck 
Jayne's maximum entropy principle 

The principle and applications 
Jaynes E.T. Information Theory and Statistical Mechanics. Physical Review, Vol 106, No 4, 620630, (1957). 
Mon 9 Mar 
Simon von Overbeck 
Kaiyu Yang 
Derivations and justifications of principle 
Shore, J. E. and Johnson, R. W. (1980). Axiomatic derivation of the
principle of maximum entropy and the principle of minimum crossentropy.
IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, IT26, 2637.
"The Constraint Rule of the Maximum Entropy Principle", Jos
Uffink, Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 27 (1996)
4779. 
Mon 9 Mar 
Simone Balmelli 
Fabian Hassler 
Maxwell's demon and Landauer's erasure principle 

Arguments for reconciling Maxwell's demon with the second law based on the impossibility of information acquisition 
Szilard, "On the decrease of entropy in a thermodynamic system by the
intervention of intelligent beings" original from (1929), translation in
Maxwell's demon: Entropy, Information, Computing, Leff and Rex,
Princeton Univ. press pp. 124133 (1990). Brillouin, "Maxwell's demon cannot operate: information and entropy I", Journal of applied physics 22 p. 334 (1951). 
Mon 16 Mar 
Christfried Focke 
Andrei Lebedev 
Bennett's argument for reconciliation using Landauer's erasure principle.

Bennett, C.H. The Thermodynamics of Computation  a Review. International Journal of Theoretical Physics, Vol 21, No 12, (1982). Landauer, R. Irreversibility and Heat Generation in the Computing Process. IBM Journal of Research and Development, 3, 183191. 
Mon 16 Mar 
Robin Jaeger 
Marco Tomamichel 
Discussion of criticisms 
Exorcist XIV: The Wrath of Maxwell's Demon. Part I. From Maxwell to Szilard. Earman and Norton Stud. Hist. Phil. Mod. Phys., Vol 29, No. 4 p435471, 1998 Exorcist XIV: The Wrath of Maxwell's Demon. Part II. From Szilard to Landauer and Beyond. Earman and Norton Stud. Hist. Phil. Mod. Phys., Vol 30, No. 1 p140, 1999 
Mon 23 Mar 
Corsin Pfister 
Oscar Dahlsten 
Mechanical models for second law violation 
Compressible dynamics, time reversibility, Maxwell's demon, and the second law P.A.Skordos Physical Review E, vol 48, number 2, p777, 1993 Mechanical models of Maxwell's demon with noninvariant phase volume. Zhang and Zhang Physical review A, vol 46, number 8, p4598, 1992 
Mon 23 Mar 
Philip Kupper 
Evgeny Kozik 
Reversible computation 
Toffoli T. Reversible computation MIT/LCS/TM151, (1980). Feynman lectures on computation

Mon 30 Mar 
Martin Paesold 
Andrei Lebedev 
Information erasure in a stochastic model 
Heat generation required by information erasure, Shizume, Phys Rev E, vol 52, number 4, p3495, 1995. 
Mon 30 Mar 
Niklaus Papritz 
Sergei Isakov 
Brownian motors 
"Introduction to the physics of Brownian motors", P. Reimann and P. Hänggi, Applied Physics A, Vol. 75, 169 (2002), "Thermodynamics and Kinetics of a Brownian Motor", R. D. Astumian, Science, Vol. 276, 917 (1997). "Forced Thermal Ratchets", M. O. Magnasco, Physical Review Letters, Vol. 71, 1477. 
Mon 6 Apr 
Marco Schweizer  Fabian Hassler 
Emergence of thermal equilibrium 

Entanglement between system and environment I 
Bocchieri, P. and Loinger, A. Phys. Rev. 114, 948–951 (1959). Chapter , 'Purestate quantum statistical mechanics and black holes', in Lloyd, S. Black Holes, Demons and the Loss of Coherence, Thesis, Rockefeller Univ. (1988). 
Mon 6 Apr 
Maximilian Kelm 
Peter Pickl 
Ostermontagno proseminar  Mon 13 April  
Entanglement between system and environment II 
Popescu, S., Short, A. J. and Winter, A. Nature Phys. 2, 754–758 (2006). 
Mon 20 Apr 
Markus Schmassmann 
Marco Tomamichel 
Entanglement between system and environment III 
Linden, N., Popescu, S., Short, A.J. and Winter, A., Quantum mechanical evolution towards thermal equilibrium, arXiv:0812.2385 (2008). 
Mon 20 Apr 
Daniel Lercher 
Wojciech De Roeck 
Explicit thermalisation models I 
Calabrese, P. and Cardy, J., Entanglement Entropy and Quantum Field
Theory: A NonTechnical Introduction, Int. J. on Quantum Information, 4
(2006), arXiv:quantph/0505193. Calabrese, P. and Cardy, Entanglement Entropy and Quantum Field Theory, hepth/0405152 (2008). 
Mon 27 Apr 
Nikolaus Buchheim 
Andreas Rüegg 
Explicit thermalisation models II 
Derivation of master equations in Chapter 3 of "The theory of open quantum systems" H.P. Breuer and F. Petruccione, (Oxford university press, Oxford, 2002)(Examples of approach to thermal equilibrium in sections 3.4.2 and 3.4.6). 
Mon 27 Apr 
Martin Fluder 
Johan Aaberg 
Eigenstate thermalisation 
"Quantum statistical mechanics in a closed system", J. M. Deutsch, Physical Review A, Vol. 43, 2046 (1991), "Chaos and quantum thermalization", M. Srednicki, Physical Review E, Vol. 50, 888 (1994). "Thermalization and its mechanism for generic isolated quantum systems", M. Rigol, V. Dunjko, and M. Olshanii, Nature, Vol. 452, 854 (2008). 
Mon 4 May 
Pierre Rodriguez 
Gang Zhou 
Ergodicity
[Whiteboard talk] 
"Modern Ergodic theory" J. L. Lebowitz and O. Penrose, Physics Today, February 1973, p.23
"Weak and strong chaos in FermiPastaUlam models and
beyond" M. Pettini, L. Casetti, M. CerruttiSola, R. Franzosi, E. G. D.
Cohen 
Mon 4 May 
Maximilian Andrae 
Johan Aaberg 
Miscellaneous 

Fluctuation theorems 
"The Nonequilibrium Thermodynamics of Small Systems", C.
Bustamante, J. Liphart, and F. Ritort, Physics Today, Vol. 58, no. 7, 43
(2005). "Entropy production fluctuation theorem and the nonequilibrium work relation for free energy differences", G. E. Crooks, Physical Review E, Vol. 60, 2721 (1999). "Nonequilibrium Equality for Free Energy Differences", C. Jarzynski, Physical Review Letters Vol. 78, 2690 (1997). 
Mon 11 May 
Vincent Beaud  Sebastian Schmidt 
Black hole information paradox, Hawking radiation 
Do Black Holes Destroy Information? John Preskill http://xxx.lanl.gov/abs/hepth/9209058] Hawking radiation and black hole thermodynamics A review by Don Page: http://www.iop.org/EJ/article/13672630/7/1/203/njp5_1_203.html 
Mon 11 May 
Alex Vitanov 
Stefan Hohenegger 
Explanation of paradox based on state merging
[Whiteboard talkno slides] 
Black holes as mirrors: quantum information in random subsystems Hayden, Preskill, arXiv.org:0708.4025 
Mon 18 May 
Szher Oleg 
Roberto Volpato 
Entropy in biophysics 
What Is Life? Mind and Matter, E. Schrödinger, Cambridge University Press, (1944). Thermodynamics of natural selection I: Energy flow and the limits on organization, 
Mon 18 May 
Robert Polster 
Oscar Dahlsten 
Arrow of time and entropy 
Physical Origins of Time Asymmetry, Eds J. J. Halliwell, J. PérezMercader, Cambridge Univ. Press, (1994).
Lebowitz, Macroscopic Laws, Microscopic Dynamics, Time's Arrow and Boltzmann's Entropy, Physica A, 194:127, (1993). http://www.math.rutgers.edu/~lebowitz/PUBLIST/publistmod.html A quantum solution to the arrowoftime dilemma, Lorenzo Maccone, arXiv:0802.0438v2 (2008). 
Mon 25 May 
Iwan Gloor 
Ingo Kirsch 
Algorithmic complexity 
"Algorithmic randomness and physical entropy" W. H. Zurek, Physical Review A, Vol. 40, 4731 (1989). 
Mon 25 May 
Marek Pikulski  Charlotte Gils 
The talks start 8.45 in HIT K51 (Hoenggerberg) and should normally not last longer than until 12.30. See table above for the dates of the talks.
The student is assigned a topic to learn about and
eventually explain to the others in the class. This is done both by an
oral presentation and a written report.
Criteria for obtaining a Testat, i.e. passing the module:
* Give a presentation that is pedagogical and demonstrates solid understanding of the material.
* Be present at least 80% of the time.
* Hand in a written report of your talk in English.
* Ask at least one question in the semester.
You
are supposed to give a "professional" talk in English. If you do not
know how to do this, ask your assistant immediately for assistance. The
talk should be 451h30 minutes long.
Students in the audience are expected to ask questions and
think of a good question to ask at the end of the presentation. If the
speaker does not know the answer they should say so, rather than risk
giving incorrect/confusing answers.
A student will be associated
with a research assistant at the institute who will be available to
support the student. Please be sure to contact your respective assistant
at least six weeks before your talk to discuss logistics. Be sure to
keep your assistant updated of your work at least once a week.
One week before your talk you are expected to have a
draft of your report as well as a finished set of slides (the report can
be handed in later and is not necessary for the talk).
The written report is in English. Note that no report = no Testat.
Deadline 1, Fri 15 May: Send report to assistant for feedback
Deadline 2, Fri 29 May: Send final version to colbeck@phys.ethz.ch
The report will be compiled to a book with all other
contributions, and must therefore be prepared using a specific LaTeX
macro. This was created by Prof Katzgraber who previously organised the
proseminar, but any questions should be addressed to us.
LATEX MACRO (Download the file 'template.tgz' and use those files only)
INSTRUCTIONS (Follow these carefully)