In our research we wish to 'make out a case' for thermal reservoirs (baths) as potentially useful resources in quantum optics, namely, in processes involving matter interacting with quantized electromagnetic fields, and their applications to quantum technologies: quantum information processing, quantum sensing and metrology, as well as quantum thermodynamics.
In general, there is little we can do to avoid the ubiquitous presence of environments described as thermal baths in contact with quantum systems: with very few exceptions, all quantum systems are open.
One may try to reduce the bath effects on the quantum system of interest by means of dynamical control, originally developed to suppress bath-induced decoherence or dissipation.
Yet such control does not always yield the desired results, hence we wish to advocate a different strategy that may be colloquially summarized as follows: 'if you can't fight the bath–join it', namely, take advantage of its effects, particularly those that do not obliterate 'quantumness' in the system-bath compound.
Kurizki, G.; Shahmoon, E.; Zwick, A. (2015). Thermal Baths as Quantum Resources: More Friends Than Foes?. Physica Scripta. 90:128002 (15 pp.)