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Generalization of the geometric phase to completely positive maps

Ericsson, M and Sjoqvist, E and Brannlund, J and Oi, D K L and Pati, A K (2003) Generalization of the geometric phase to completely positive maps. Physical Review A, 67 (2). -. ISSN 1094-1622

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We generalize the notion of relative phase to completely positive (CP) maps with known unitary representation, based on interferometry. Parallel transport conditions that define the geometric phase for such maps are introduced. The interference effect is embodied in a set of interference patterns defined by flipping the environment state in one of the two paths. We show for the qubit that this structure gives rise to interesting additional information about the geometry of the evolution defined by the CP map.