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Many-body Quantum Dynamics

Cavendish Laboratory
 

More is different

We are studying many-body phenomena at the interface between quantum optics and solid state physics.

Following a statement by P.W. Anderson, "More is Different", genuine many-body phenomena are emergent phenomena that only appear when many particles come together, typical examples being superfluidity or magnetism.

 

Ultracold Atoms in optical lattices

We study many-body phenomena using ultracold atoms, that is Bose-Einstein condensates and degenerate Fermi gases, which we load into optical lattices. These periodic optical potentials are analogous to the electrostatic potential felt by electrons in a conventional solid. Thereby, we effectively build a quantum simulator for condensed matter physics, where we can study many-body physics in a very clean and precisely controlled system and have all the tools from quantum optics at our disposal.

 

3D Lattice structure generated by three retroreflected laser beams

 

Dynamics

In particular, we can follow the dynamics of the system in real time and observe its non-equilibrium dynamics, which is typically an even richer problem than the equilibrium states.

In addition, this toolbox enables us to synthesize genuinely new many-body systems and create novel effects.

  • Strongly-correlated systems

  • Topological systems

  • Band-structure engineering

  • Out-of-equilibrium dynamics

  • Quantum quenches

  • Disordered Systems / Many-body localization

 

Projects

Latest news

Postdoc positions Open

2 December 2020

Two new Postdoc positions available to work with us on experiments with ultracold atoms in and out of optical lattices. Application closes on 3/1/21.

Localisation paper published in PRL

13 November 2020

Our latest work on Observing localisation in a 2D quasicrystalline optical lattice was published today in PRL. Quasicrystals are long-range ordered but not periodic, representing an interesting middle ground between order and disorder. We experimentally and numerically study the localization transition in the ground state...