Date of Award


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Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Robert Griffiths


This dissertation contains results on three quite different topics. First, I investigate the entanglement resources required for two parties to jointly implement a unitary operation using local operations and classical communication (LOCC). If this resource is of smallest feasible Schmidt rank then it must be maximally entangled. If the Schmidt rank is higher, less entanglement may suffice. Second, I investigate the source of the “quantum speedup”. I quantify quantum interference and show that in order for a quantum computer to be significantly faster than a classical computer, it must make use of operations capable of producing large amounts of interference (or a large number of operations that can produce small amounts of interference). A quantum computer not making use of such a resource can be efficiently simulated by a classical computer. Third, I investigate zero-error source-channel coding. In this scenario, Alice wishes to convey a message to Bob through a noisy channel, with zero chance of error, in the case where Bob already has some prior knowledge regarding the message that is to be sent. For classical messages and classical channels, it was known that three graph invariants of Lovász, Szegedy, and Schrijver provide necessary conditions for this task. We show that this applies also when Alice and Bob make use of an entangled state, unifying and extending a series of previous results. Finally, I introduce a fully quantum version of source-channel coding where the message to be sent, the channel, and the side information are all quantum. Whereas the classical case makes use of graphs, the quantum case makes use of non-commutative graphs. I generalize the concept of graph homomorphism, as well as the Szegedy and Schrijver numbers, to non-commutative graphs and show that the necessary conditions for the classical case generalize to the quantum case. Using this theory, I construct a quantum channel whose one-shot zero-error entanglement assisted capacity can only be unlocked using a non-maximally entangled state, showing that in this case less is more when it comes to entanglement resources.