Skip to main content

Energy Conversion and Information Processing at Small Scales

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - NanoThermo (Energy Conversion and Information Processing at Small Scales)

Reporting period: 2018-01-01 to 2019-06-30

In recent years remarkable progress has been achieved in describing the energetics of small devices which can be artificial synthetic devices (e.g. electronic nanocircuits) or natural ones (e.g. molecular motors). Since these objects are small, understanding how they process energy and information to function requires to develop a theory that accounts for strong environment fluctuations, quantum effects, and strong nonequilibrium drives. The main goal of this project is to develop new concepts and theoretical tools to understand: 1) how one can make use of quantum effects to improve the performance of energy and information processing in such devices 2) understand how biological systems process energy and information at the molecular scale. Progress in these directions would have relevance to develop green and efficient nanotechnologies and to better understand living systems and possible cure diseases.
In quantum thermodynamics we proposed simple microscopic models for quantum dissipation Phys. Rev. E. 99, 042142 (2019) & Phys. Rev. E 96, 052132 (2017) & Entropy 18, 447 (2016) and established explicit connections between quantum information and thermodynamics: Phys. Rev. Lett. 122, 150603 (2019) & Phys. Rev. X 7, 021003 (2017). Formulations in presence of strong system-reservoir interactions were also found Phys. Rev. B 97, 085435 (2018) & Phys. Rev. B 97, 205405 (2018) & Phys. Rev. E 95, 062101 (2017).
We established a thermodynamics for open chemical reaction networks Phys. Rev. X 6, 041064 (2016), extended it to reaction diffusion Phys. Rev. Lett. 121, 108301 (2018), stochastic reactions J. Chem. Phys. 149, 245101 (2018), and enzymatic reactions New J. Phys. 20, 042002 (2018). We will use it to describe metabolism and signal transduction. The role of negative differential response in biochemistry was analyzed J. Phys. 21, 073005 (2019).
We made important contributions to stochastic thermodynamics: - Crucial role of conservation laws Phys. Rev. E 94, 052117 (2016) & New J. Phys. 20, 023007 (2018) - Unified perspective on fluctuation relations Entropy 20, 635 (2018) - Nonequilibrium fluctuation-dissipation relation Phys. Rev. Lett. 117, 180601 (2016) – Collective effects in ensembles of interacting systems: Phys. Rev. E 99, 022135 (2019) & Phys. Rev. X 8, 031056 (2018) & EPL 120, 30009 (2017).
Formulations of thermodynamics when only parts of the degrees of freedoms out-of-equilibrium are accessible (coarse-graining): J. Stat. Phys., 176, 94 (2019) & Phys. Rev. Lett. 119, 240601 (2017) & Phys. Rev. E 94, 062148 (2016).
Strategies to approach Carnot efficiency at finite power: EPL 118, 40003 (2017).
Non-Markovian effects: Phys. Rev. E. 99, 012120 (2019) & Phys. Rev. Lett. 121, 040601 (2018).
Predicting heat produced when erasing bits with majority rule logic: Entropy 21, 284 (2019).
We made great progress on all aspects of the project: foundations of quantum thermodynamics and its connections to information theory, thermodynamics of collection of interacting systems, thermodynamics in presence of strong system-reservoir interactions and conservation laws.
The foundation of a nonequilibrium thermodynamics for open chemical reaction networks has been established which open the way towards a better understanding of energy and information transduction in biology.
Illustration of a biochemical assembler (image also appears in our 2019 Nat. Comm. publication)