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Studying Many-Body Physics using a Trapped Ion Quantum Simulator

Event Details

Event Dates: 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017 - 4:00pm

Seminar Location: 

  • JILA X317

Speaker Name(s): 

Paul Hess

Speaker Affiliation(s): 

Joint Quantum Institute, University of Maryland
Seminar Type/Subject

Scientific Seminar Type: 

  • JILA Public Seminar

Event Details & Abstract: 

Linear arrays of trapped atomic ions are a unique experimental platform for studying emergent phenomenon in many-body quantum physics. Using laser light to drive collective ion motion, we generate long-range interactions between trapped ion spins and realize models of frustrated quantum magnetism. Local control and individual spin resolution allow us to study such models in ways not possible using condensed matter experiments. I will discuss two recent results where our trapped ions were used to study universal properties when these models are out-of-equilibrium. First, by applying programmable disorder, we generated many-body localized (MBL) states that defy thermalization and retain long-term memory of their initial conditions.

Second, when periodically strobing the ions with a disordered drive, we observed that the many-body localization stabilized collective oscillations of the spins, creating a state known as a discrete time crystal.

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