Quantum coherence and its destruction (dephasing) by coupling to a dissipative environment plays an important role in time-resolved nonlinear optical response as well as nonadiabatic transitions and tunneling processes in condensed phases. Generating functions of density-matrix elements and multitime coordinate and momentum correlation functions related to these phenomena are calculated using a pathintegral approach by performing functional integration. The dissipative environment is assumed to be an ensemble of harmonic oscillators and is taken into account by using Feynman-Vernon influence functional. Closed-form expressions for generating functions in terms of the bath spectral density are derived. The present theory generalizes earlier calculations of these quantities to arbitrary temperatures, any dependence of the transition coupling on coordinates (non-Condon effects), and arbitrary order in the interstate coupling. Conditions for factorizing the Liouville-space generating functions that allow a reduced description based on the classical Langevin equation are established. Possible applications to four-wave-mixing spectroscopy and nonadiabatic rate processes are discussed.
- Received 27 April 1992
©1993 American Physical Society