|This article relies largely or entirely upon a single source. (March 2009)|
LOCC, or local operations and classical communication, is a method in quantum information theory where a local (product) operation is performed on part of the system, and where the result of that operation is "communicated" classically to another part where usually another local operation is performed. An example of this is distinguishing two Bell pairs, such as the following:
Let's say the two-qubit system is separated, where the first qubit is given to Alice and the second is given to Bob. Assume that Alice measures the first qubit, and obtains the result 0. We still don't know which Bell pair we were given. Alice sends the result to Bob over a classical channel, where Bob measures the second qubit, also obtaining 0. Bob now knows that since the joint measurement outcome is , then the pair given was .
Nielsen  has derived a general condition to determine whether one pure state of a bipartite quantum system may be transformed into another using only LOCC. Full details may be found in the paper referenced earlier, the results are sketched out here.
The 's are known as Schmidt coefficients. If they are ordered largest to smallest (i.e. with ) then can only be transformed into using only local operations if and only if for all in the range
In more concise notation:
This is a more restrictive condition that local operations cannot increase the degree of entanglement. It is quite possible that converting between and in either direction is impossible because neither set of Schmidt coefficients majorises the other. For large if all Schmidt coefficients are non-zero then the probability of one set of coefficients majorising the other becomes negligible. Therefore for large the probability of any arbitrary state being converted into another becomes negligible.
- Phys. Rev. Lett. 83, 436 - 439 (1999)
- M. A. Nielsen, “Conditions for a class of entanglement transformations”, Phys. Rev. Lett. 83 (2) 436-439 (1999) (http://arxiv.org/abs/quant-ph/9811053)