Bound on efficiency of heat engine from uncertainty relation viewpoint

Pritam Chattopadhyay, Ayan Mitra, Goutam Paul, Vasilios Zarikas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Quantum cycles in established heat engines can be modeled with various quantum systems as working substances. For example, a heat engine can be modeled with an infinite potential well as the working substance to determine the efficiency and work done. However, in this method, the relationship between the quantum observables and the physically measurable parameters—i.e., the efficiency and work done—is not well understood from the quantum mechanics approach. A detailed analysis is needed to link the thermodynamic variables (on which the efficiency and work done depends) with the uncertainty principle for better understanding. Here, we present the connection of the sum uncertainty relation of position and momentum operators with thermodynamic variables in the quantum heat engine model. We are able to determine the upper and lower bounds on the efficiency of the heat engine through the uncertainty relation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number439
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021


  • Heat engine
  • Infinite potential well
  • Stirling cycle
  • Uncertainty relation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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