SciPost Phys. 12, 139 (2022) ·
published 22 April 2022
We derive universal thermodynamic inequalities that bound from below the moments of first-passage times of stochastic currents in nonequilibrium stationary states of Markov jump processes in the limit where the thresholds that define the first-passage problem are large. These inequalities describe a tradeoff between speed, uncertainty, and dissipation in nonequilibrium processes, which are quantified, respectively, with the moments of the first-passage times of stochastic currents, the splitting probability, and the mean entropy production rate. Near equilibrium, the inequalities imply that mean-first passage times are lower bounded by the Van't Hoff-Arrhenius law, whereas far from thermal equilibrium the bounds describe a universal speed limit for rate processes. When the current is the stochastic entropy production, then the bounds are equalities, a remarkable property that follows from the fact that the exponentiated negative entropy production is a martingale.
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