Calorimetric measurement of work for a driven harmonic oscillator

Rui Sampaio*, Samu Suomela, Tapio Ala-Nissilä

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
302 Downloads (Pure)


A calorimetric measurement has recently been proposed as a promising technique to measure thermodynamic quantities in a dissipative superconducting qubit. These measurements rely on the fact that the system is projected into energy eigenstates whenever energy is exchanged with the environment. This requirement imposes a restriction on the class of systems that can be measured in this way. Here we extend the calorimetric protocol to the measurement of work in a driven quantum harmonic oscillator. We employ a scheme based on a two-level approximation that makes use of an experimentally accessible quantity and show how it relates to the work obtained through the standard two-measurement protocol. We find that the average work is well approximated in the underdamped regime for short driving times and, in the overdamped regime, for any driving time. However, this approximation fails for the variance and higher moments of work at finite temperatures. Furthermore, we show how to relate the work statistics obtained through this scheme to the work statistics given by the two-measurement protocol.

Original languageEnglish
Article number062122
Pages (from-to)1-9
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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