Condensed Matter seminar: Synthesizing new quantum-many-body states of matter with trapped ions

Wed, 04/10/2013 - 16:00 - 17:00
Michael J. Biercuk, University of Sydney

The physics of strongly interacting quantum spin systems exhibits extraordinary richness, demonstrating a wide variety of strongly correlated phases. Some of these phases are well studied theoretically and experimentally, but many others are poorly understood. This gap in our knowledge has tremendous bearing on our ability to harness exotic quantum phenomena for the development of advanced materials. In this talk we present an overview of a novel approach to addressing this challenge, using trapped atomic ions to synthesize novel quantum many-body states of matter from the bottom up. We describe our recent experiments leveraging advanced quantum control techniques to engineer Ising interactions between as many as 350 spin-1/2 systems on a 2D triangular lattice. Our system permits the realization of a variable range antiferromagnetic Ising Hamiltonian, displaying frustration and potentially spin-liquid dynamics. Finally, we describe new approaches to realize much more complex Hamiltonians in many-body systems by engineering quantum dynamics in the time domain.