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Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics


A few simply-stated rules govern the entanglement patterns that can occur in mutually unbiased basis sets (MUBs), and constrain the combinations of such patterns that can coexist (ie , the stoichiometry) in full complements of (pN + 1) MUBs. We consider Hilbert spaces of prime power dimension (as realized by systems of N prime-state particles, or qupits), where full complements are known to exist, and we assume only that MUBs are eigenbases of generalized Pauli operators, without using a particular construction. The general rules include the following: 1) In any MUB, a particular qupit appears either in a pure state, or totally entangled, and 2) in any full MUB complement, each qupit is pure in (p +1) bases (not necessarily the same ones), and totally entangled in the remaining (pN − p). It follows that the maximum number of product bases is p + 1, and when this number is realized, all remaining (p N − p) bases in the complement are characterized by the total entanglement of every qupit. This “standard distribution” is inescapable for two qupits (of any p), where only product and generalized Bell bases are admissible MUB types. This and the following results generalize previous results for qubits [13, 17] and qutrits [16], drawing particularly upon Ref. [17]. With three qupits there are three MUB types, and a number of combinations (p +2) are possible in full complements. With N = 4, there are 6 MUB types for p = 2, but new MUB types become possible with larger p, and these are essential to realizing full complements. With this example, we argue that new MUB types, showing new entanglement characteristics, should enter with every step in N , and when N is a prime plus 1, also at critical p values, p = N − 1. Such MUBs should play critical roles in filling complements.




Lawrence, Jay

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