Equilibration of isolated macroscopic quantum systems
We investigate the equilibration of an isolated macroscopic quantum system in the sense that deviations from a steady state become unmeasurably small for the overwhelming majority of times within any sufficiently large time interval. The main requirements are that the initial state, possibly far from equilibrium, exhibits a macroscopic population of at most one energy level and that degeneracies of energy eigenvalues and of energy gaps (differences of energy eigenvalues) are not of exceedingly large multiplicities. Our approach closely follows and extends recent works by Short and Farrelly (2012 New. J. Phys. 14 013063), in particular going beyond the realm of finite-dimensional systems and large effective dimensions. © IOP Publishing Ltd and Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft.