Decoherence framework for Wigner's-friend experiments



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Relaño Pérez, Armando (2020) Decoherence framework for Wigner's-friend experiments. Physical review A, 101 (3). ISSN 2469-9926

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The decoherence interpretation of quantum measurements is applied to Wigner's-friend experiments. A framework in which all the experimental outcomes arise from unitary evolutions is proposed. Within it, a measurement is not completed until an uncontrolled environment monitorizes the state composed of the system, the apparatus, and the observer. The (apparent) wave-function collapse and the corresponding randomness result from tracing out this environment; it is thus the ultimate responsible party for the emergence of definite outcomes. Two main effects arise from this fact. First, external interference measurements, trademark of Wigner's-friend experiments, modify the memory records of the internal observers; this framework provides a univocal protocol to calculate all these changes. Second, it can be used to build a consistent scenario for the recently proposed extended versions of the Wigner's-friend experiment. In regard to the work of Frauchiger and Renner [Nat. Commun. 9, 3711 (2018)], this framework shows that the agents' claims become consistent if the changes in their memories are properly taken into account. Furthermore, the particular setup discussed by Brukner [Entropy 20, 350 (2018)] cannot be tested against the decoherence framework, because it does not give rise to well-defined outcomes according to this formalism. A variation of this setup, devised to fill this gap, makes it possible to assign joint truth values to the observations made by all the agents. This framework also narrows the requisites for such experiments, making them virtually impossible to apply to conscious (human) beings. Notwithstanding, it also opens the door to future realizations on quantum machines.

Item Type:Article
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©2020 American Physical Society. This work has been supported by the Spanish Grants No.
FIS2015-63770-P (MINECO/FEDER, EU) and PGC2018-
094180-B-I00 (MCIU/AEI/FEDER, EU). The author acknowledges A. L. Corps for his critical reading of the manuscript.

Uncontrolled Keywords:Optics; Physics, Atomic, Molecular & Chemical
Subjects:Sciences > Physics > Thermodynamics
ID Code:60210
Deposited On:04 May 2020 10:28
Last Modified:12 May 2020 08:07

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