We discuss the disturbance by measurements which unambiguously discriminate between given candidate states. We prove that such an optimal measurement necessarily changes distinguishable states indistinguishable when the inconclusive outcome is obtained. The result was previously shown by Chefles [Phys. Lett. A 239, 339 (1998)PYLAAG0375-960110.1016/S0375-9601(98)00064-4] under restrictions on the class of quantum measurements and on the definition of optimality. Our theorems remove these restrictions and are also applicable to infinitely many candidate states. Combining with our previous results, one can obtain concrete mathematical conditions for the resulting states. The method may have a wide variety of applications in contexts other than state discrimination.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics