Stability of quantum systems at three scales: Passivity, quantum weak energy inequalities and the microlocal spectrum condition

Christopher J. Fewster, Rainer Verch
March 07, 2002
Quantum weak energy inequalities have recently been extensively discussed as a condition on the dynamical stability of quantum field states, particularly on curved spacetimes. We formulate the notion of a quantum weak energy inequality for general dynamical systems on static background spacetimes and establish a connection between quantum weak energy inequalities and thermodynamic stability in the general setting. We show that the free scalar field in representations induced by quasifree Hadamard states provides an example system, and we indicate that (1) the microlocal spectrum condition, (2) quantum weak energy inequalities and (3) the existence of passive states (e.g., mixtures of ground- and thermal equilibrium states) are essentially equivalent, which is significant because each of these conditions becomes effective at a different length scale. [See title page of paper for the full abstract.]