The way to determine the renormalized energy of inhomogeneous systems of a quantum field under an external potential is established for both equilibrium and nonequilibrium scenarios based on thermo field dynamics. The key step is to find an extension of the on-shell concept valid in homogeneous case. In the nonequilibrium case, we expand the field operator by time-dependent wavefunctions that are solutions of the appropriately chosen differential equation, synchronizing with temporal change of thermal situation, and the quantum transport equation is derived from the renormalization procedure. Through numerical calculations of a triple-well model with a reservoir, we show that the number distribution and the time-dependent wavefunctions are relaxed consistently to the correct equilibrium forms at the long-term limit.
ASJC Scopus subject areas