# Super-duper-activation of the zero-error quantum capacity

## Abstract

The zero-error classical capacity of a quantum channel is the asymptotic rate at which it can be used to send classical bits perfectly, so that they can be decoded with zero probability of error. The study of zero-error capacities dates right back to Shannon and the early days of information theory. We show that there exist pairs of quantum channels, neither of which individually have any zero-error capacity whatsoever (even if arbitrarily many uses of the channels are available), but such that access to even a single copy of both channels allows classical information to be sent perfectly reliably. In other words, we prove that the zero-error classical capacity can be superactivated. This result is the first example of superactivation of a classical capacity of a quantum channel. We further strengthen this result to show that there exist pairs of channels, neither of which have any zero-error classical capacity (as before), yet for which access to one copy of the joint channel even allows far more delicate quantum information to be transmitted perfectly. This subsumes the first result, and also implies that the quantum zero-error capacity can be superactivated. But it is strictly stronger than either of these. Indeed, this is the strongest conceivable form of superactivation, and nothing similar is possible for standard Shannon capacities of quantum channels or for zero-error capacities of classical channels. © 2010 IEEE.