Nature Communications

Measurement of geometric dephasing using a superconducting qubit

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A quantum system interacting with its environment is subject to dephasing, which ultimately destroys the information it holds. Here we use a superconducting qubit to experimentally show that this dephasing has both dynamic and geometric origins. It is found that geometric dephasing, which is present even in the adiabatic limit and when no geometric phase is acquired, can either reduce or restore coherence depending on the orientation of the path the qubit traces out in its projective Hilbert space. It accompanies the evolution of any system in Hilbert space subjected to noise.