Physical Review A, Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics vol:64 issue:1 pages:010101
We consider one single copy of a mixed state of two qubits and investigate how its entanglement changes under local quantum operations and classical communications (LQCC) of the type rho'similar to (A x B)rho (A x B)(dagger). We consider a real matrix parametrization of the set of density matrices and show that these LQCC operations correspond to left and right multiplication by a Lorentz matrix, followed by normalization. A constructive way of bringing this matrix into a normal form is derived. This allows us to calculate explicitly the optimal local filtering operations for concentrating entanglement. Furthermore, we give a complete characterization of the mixed states that can be purified arbitrarily close to a Bell state. Finally, we obtain a new way of calculating the entanglement of formation.