Indefinite causal order enables perfect quantum communication with zero capacity channels

Article Type

Research Article

Publication Title

New Journal of Physics


Quantum mechanics is compatible with scenarios where the relative order between two events can be indefinite. Here we show that two independent instances of a noisy process can behave as a perfect quantum communication channel when used in a coherent superposition of two alternative orders. This phenomenon occurs even if the original process has zero capacity to transmit quantum information. In contrast, perfect quantum communication does not occur when the message is sent directly from the sender to the receiver through a superposition of alternative paths, with an independent noise process acting on each path. The possibility of perfect quantum communication through independent noisy channels highlights a fundamental difference between the superposition of orders in time and the superposition of paths in space.



Publication Date



Open Access, Gold, Green

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