The capacity of black holes to transmit quantum information

  • Kamil BrádlerEmail author
  • Christoph Adami
Open Access


We study the properties of the quantum information transmission channel that emerges from the quantum dynamics of particles interacting with a black hole horizon. We calculate the quantum channel capacity in two limiting cases where a single-letter capacity is known to exist: the limit of perfectly reflecting and perfectly absorbing black holes. We find that the perfectly reflecting black hole channel is closely related to the Unruh channel and that its capacity is non-vanishing, allowing for the perfect reconstruction of quantum information outside of the black hole horizon. We also find that the complementary channel (transmitting entanglement behind the horizon) is entanglement-breaking in this case, with vanishing capacity. We then calculate the quantum capacity of the black hole channel in the limit of a perfectly absorbing black hole and find that this capacity vanishes, while the capacity of the complementary channel is non-vanishing instead. Rather than inviting a new crisis for quantum physics, this finding instead is in accordance with the quantum no-cloning theorem, because it guarantees that there are no space-like surfaces that contain both the sender’s quantum state and the receiver’s reconstructed quantum state.


Black Holes Statistical Methods 


Open Access

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Astronomy and PhysicsSaint Mary’s UniversityHalifaxCanada
  2. 2.Department of Physics and AstronomyMichigan State UniversityEast LansingUnited States

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