Dynamics of Thermalization and Decoherence of a Nanoscale System

Sam Genway, Andrew Ho, Derek Lee

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We study the decoherence and thermalization dynamics of a nanoscale system coupled nonperturbatively to a fully quantum-mechanical bath. The system is prepared out of equilibrium in a pure state of the complete system. We propose a random matrix model and show analytically that there are two robust temporal regimes in the approach of the system to equilibrium | an initial Gaussian decay followed by an exponential tail, consistent with numerical results on small interacting lattices [S. Genway, A. F. Ho and D. K. K. Lee, Phys. Rev. Lett. 105 260402 (2010)]. Furthermore, the system decays towards a Gibbs ensemble in accordance with the eigenstate thermalization hypothesis.
Original languageEnglish
Article number130408
Pages (from-to)1
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Publication statusPublished - 26 Sept 2013

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