An optical lattice is generated by counterpropagating laser beams, creating a periodic intensity pattern. Due to the periodic potential, neutral atoms can be trapped using the Stark shift, giving rise to artificial quantum lattice systems allowing for an enormous degree of control over the system's parameters. In such systems, signatures of quantum phase transitions can be observed, and they may also serve as promising candidates for quantum information processing, not the least because large systems sizes are readily available.
We are mainly concerned with non-equilibrium phenomena in quenched systems of atoms in optical lattices, with questions of temperature effects and adiabatic heating, as well as with complex mixed lattice models, including Bose-Fermi mixtures. Recently, questions of probing questions concerning disordered systems have been addressed, and ideas on realizing computational models have been implemented. This work is partially done in collaboration with experimentalists.
Selected group publications