Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

P.K. Aravind, Advisor

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Germano S. Iannacchione, Department Head

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Alex A. Zozulya, Committee Member




The objective of this thesis is to use the Majorana description of a spin-1 system to give a geometrical construction of a maximal set of Mutually Unbiased Bases (MUBs) and Symmetric Informationally Complete Positive Operator Valued Measures (SIC-POVMs) for this system. In the Majorana Approach, an arbitrary pure state of a spin-1 system is represented by a pair of points on the Reimann sphere, or a pair of unit vectors (known as Majorana vectors or M-vectors). Spin-1 states can be of three types: those whose vectors are parallel, those whose vectors are antiparallel and those whose vectors make an arbitrary angle. The types of bases possible for a spin-1 system are thus geometrically much more varied than for a spin-half system or qubit, which is the standard unit of information storage in most quantum protocols. Our derivation of the MUBs and SIC-POVMs proceeds from a recently derived expression for the squared overlap of two spin-1 states in terms of their M-vectors and the minimal additional set of assumptions that are needed. These assumptions include time-reversal invariance in the case of the MUBs and the requirement of three-fold symmetry in the case of the SIC-POVMs. The applications of these results to problems in quantum information are mentioned.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

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Restricted-WPI community only


Quantum Protocols, SIC-POVMs, MUBs, Geometrical Construction, Majorana Representation