An optical lattice with sound.
2021; 599 (7884): 211-215
Quantized sound waves-phonons-govern the elastic response of crystalline materials, and also play an integral part in determining their thermodynamic properties and electrical response (for example, by binding electrons into superconducting Cooper pairs)1-3. The physics of lattice phonons and elasticity is absent in simulators of quantum solids constructed of neutral atoms in periodic light potentials: unlike real solids, traditional optical lattices are silent because they are infinitely stiff4. Optical-lattice realizations of crystals therefore lack some of the central dynamical degrees of freedom that determine the low-temperature properties of real materials. Here, we create an optical lattice with phonon modes using a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC) coupled to a confocal optical resonator. Playing the role of an active quantum gas microscope, the multimode cavity QED system both images the phonons and induces the crystallization that supports phonons via short-range, photon-mediated atom-atom interactions. Dynamical susceptibility measurements reveal the phonon dispersion relation, showing that these collective excitations exhibit a sound speed dependent on the BEC-photon coupling strength. Our results pave the way for exploring the rich physics of elasticity in quantum solids, ranging from quantum melting transitions5 to exotic 'fractonic' topological defects6 in the quantum regime.
View details for DOI 10.1038/s41586-021-03945-x
View details for PubMedID 34759361
- Enhancing Associative Memory Recall and Storage Capacity Using Confocal Cavity QED PHYSICAL REVIEW X 2021; 11 (2)
Dynamical Spin-Orbit Coupling of a Quantum Gas.
Physical review letters
2019; 123 (16): 160404
We realize the dynamical 1D spin-orbit coupling (SOC) of a Bose-Einstein condensate confined within an optical cavity. The SOC emerges through spin-correlated momentum impulses delivered to the atoms via Raman transitions. These are effected by classical pump fields acting in concert with the quantum dynamical cavity field. Above a critical pump power, the Raman coupling emerges as the atoms superradiantly populate the cavity mode with photons. Concomitantly, these photons cause a backaction onto the atoms, forcing them to order their spin-spatial state. This SOC-inducing superradiant Dicke phase transition results in a spinor-helix polariton condensate. We observe emergent SOC through spin-resolved atomic momentum imaging and temporal heterodyne measurement of the cavity-field emission. Dynamical SOC in quantum gas cavity QED, and the extension to dynamical gauge fields, may enable the creation of Meissner-like effects, topological superfluids, and exotic quantum Hall states in coupled light-matter systems.
View details for DOI 10.1103/PhysRevLett.123.160404
View details for PubMedID 31702345
Sign-Changing Photon-Mediated Atom Interactions in Multimode Cavity Quantum Electrodynamics
PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS
2019; 122 (19): 193601
Sign-changing interactions constitute a crucial ingredient in the creation of frustrated many-body systems such as spin glasses. We present here the demonstration of a photon-mediated sign-changing interaction between Bose-Einstein-condensed atoms in a confocal cavity. The interaction between two atoms is of an unusual, nonlocal form proportional to the cosine of the inner product of the atoms' position vectors. This interaction arises from the differing Gouy phase shifts of the cavity's degenerate modes. The interaction drives a nonequilibrium Dicke-type phase transition in the system leading to atomic checkerboard density-wave order. Because of the Gouy phase anomalies, the checkerboard pattern can assume either a sinelike or cosinelike character. This state is detected via the holographic imaging of the cavity's superradiant emission. Together with a companion paper [Y. Guo, V. D. Vaidya, R. M. Kroeze, R. A. Lunney, B. L. Lev, and J. Keeling, Emergent and broken symmetries of atomic self-organization arising from Gouy phases in multimode cavity QED, Phys. Rev. A 99, 053818 (2019)PLRAAN2469-992610.1103/PhysRevA.99.053818], we explore this interaction's influence on superradiant phase transitions in multimode cavities. Employing this interaction in cavity QED spin systems may enable the creation of artificial spin glasses and quantum neural networks.
View details for DOI 10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.193601
View details for Web of Science ID 000468228200005
View details for PubMedID 31144918
- Emergent and broken symmetries of atomic self-organization arising from Gouy phase shifts in multimode cavity QED PHYSICAL REVIEW A 2019; 99 (5)
Spinor Self-Ordering of a Quantum Gas in a Cavity.
Physical review letters
2018; 121 (16): 163601
We observe the joint spin-spatial (spinor) self-organization of a two-component Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC) strongly coupled to an optical cavity. This unusual nonequilibrium Hepp-Lieb-Dicke phase transition is driven by an off-resonant Raman transition formed from a classical pump field and the emergent quantum dynamical cavity field. This mediates a spinor-spinor interaction that, above a critical strength, simultaneously organizes opposite spinor states of the BEC on opposite checkerboard configurations of an emergent 2D lattice. The resulting spinor density-wave polariton condensate is observed by directly detecting the atomic spin and momentum state and by holographically reconstructing the phase of the emitted cavity field. The latter provides a direct measure of the spin state, and a spin-spatial domain wall is observed. The photon-mediated spin interactions demonstrated here may be engineered to create dynamical gauge fields and quantum spin glasses.
View details for DOI 10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.163601
View details for PubMedID 30387632
- Spinor Self-Ordering of a Quantum Gas in a Cavity PHYSICAL REVIEW LETTERS 2018; 121 (16)
- Tunable-Range, Photon-Mediated Atomic Interactions in Multimode Cavity QED PHYSICAL REVIEW X 2018; 8 (1)