Energy Fluctuations and Maxwell’s Demon in Nano-electronic Circuits

Mar 21, 2013, 11:45 AM
132:028 (Nordita)




Prof. Jukka Pekola (Aalto University School of Science)


In nanostructures fluctuations of energy play an important role, and the second law of thermodynamics, for example, applies only on the average. The distribution of entropy production and the work performed under non-equilibrium conditions are then governed by so-called fluctuation relations [1-3]. I apply these concepts to a simple single-electron box [4,5], and present an experimental demonstration of basic fluctuation relations in them [6,7]. Single-electron circuits provide furthermore a basic example of a Maxwell’s Demon, where information can be converted into energy [8]; here the information is collected by a detector with single-electron sensitivity. Finally I discuss the subtle issues of work and heat in open quantum systems. I use superconducting qubits as examples of driven systems in this context [9,10]. [1] C. Jarzynski, Nonequilibrium equality for free energy differences, Phys. Rev. Lett. 78, 2690 (1997). [2] G. E. Crooks, Entropy production fluctuation theorem and the nonequilibrium work relation for free energy differences, Phys. Rev. E 60, 2721 (1999). [3] U. Seifert, Entropy Production along a Stochastic Trajectory and an Integral Fluctuation Theorem, Phys. Rev. Lett. 95, 040602 (2005). [4] D.V. Averin and J.P. Pekola, Statistics of the dissipated energy in driven single-electron transitions, EPL 96, 67004 (2011). [5] J. P. Pekola and O.-P. Saira, Work, Free Energy and Dissipation in Voltage Driven Single-Electron Transitions, J. Low Temp. Phys. 169, 70 (2012). [6] O.-P. Saira, Y. Yoon, T. Tanttu, M. Möttönen, D. V. Averin, and J. P. Pekola, Test of Jarzynski and Crooks fluctuation relations in an electronic system, Phys. Rev. Lett. 109, 180601 (2012). [7] J. V. Koski et al., Distribution of entropy production in nonequilibrium single-electron tunneling, in preparation (2013). [8] D. V. Averin, M. Möttönen, and J. P. Pekola, Maxwell's demon based on a single-electron pump, Phys. Rev. B 84, 245448 (2011). [9] P. Solinas, D. V. Averin, and J. P. Pekola, Work and its fluctuations in a driven quantum system, arXiv:1206.5699 (2012). [10] J. P. Pekola, P. Solinas, A. Shnirman, and D. V. Averin, Calorimetric measurement of quantum work, arXiv:1212.5808 (2012).

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