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From the classical Frenet-Serret apparatus to the curvature and torsion of quantum-mechanical evolutions. Part I. Stationary Hamiltonians

Paul M. AlsingCarlo Cafaro
Feb 2024
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It is known that the Frenet-Serret apparatus of a space curve in three-dimensional Euclidean space determines the local geometry of curves. In particular, the Frenet-Serret apparatus specifies important geometric invariants, including the curvature and the torsion of a curve. It is also acknowledged in quantum information science that low complexity and high efficiency are essential features to achieve when cleverly manipulating quantum states that encode quantum information about a physical system. In this paper, we propose a geometric perspective on how to quantify the bending and the twisting of quantum curves traced by dynamically evolving state vectors. Specifically, we propose a quantum version of the Frenet-Serret apparatus for a quantum trajectory in projective Hilbert space traced by a parallel-transported pure quantum state evolving unitarily under a stationary Hamiltonian specifying the Schrodinger equation. Our proposed constant curvature coefficient is given by the magnitude squared of the covariant derivative of the tangent vector to the state vector and represents a useful measure of the bending of the quantum curve. Our proposed constant torsion coefficient, instead, is defined in terms of the magnitude squared of the projection of the covariant derivative of the tangent vector, orthogonal to both the tangent vector and the state vector. The torsion coefficient provides a convenient measure of the twisting of the quantum curve. Remarkably, we show that our proposed curvature and torsion coefficients coincide with those existing in the literature, although introduced in a completely different manner...
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