Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

Department of Physics and Arnold Sommerfeld Center for Theoretical Physics (ASC) | LMU München

Theresienstr. 37

80799 Munich

Tel. +49 89 2180 4125



Looking at strongly correlated quantum systems in microscopic detail is like taking a look at a new corner of the universe and staring at the machinery of quantum mechanics.


As START fellow, I will make full use of the MCQST network and pursue theoretical projects, which are closely connected, to on-going experiments. For example, we will optimize trial states for describing quantum magnets at elevated temperatures, as realized in the laboratories. Especially in the context of strong frustration, this approach will become important because it enables theoretical interpretations of the experiments. In another part of my work, we will develop new cooling schemes for quantum spin systems in optical lattices.

The problems I will address are related to my previous work, but they also contain significant new elements. While some aspects may appear technical at first, they have the potential to make all the difference in coming up with appealing physical explanations of the upcoming experimental observations.


Confined phases of one-dimensional spinless fermions coupled to Z2 gauge theory

U. Borla, R. Verresen, F. Grusdt, S. Moroz.

Physics Review Letters 124, 120503 (2020).

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We investigate a quantum many-body lattice system of one-dimensional spinless fermions interacting with a dynamical Z2 gauge field. The gauge field mediates long-range attraction between fermions resulting in their confinement into bosonic dimers. At strong coupling we develop an exactly solvable effective theory of such dimers with emergent constraints. Even at generic coupling and fermion density, the model can be rewritten as a local spin chain. Using the Density Matrix Renormalization Group the system is shown to form a Luttinger liquid, indicating the emergence of fermionic fractionalized excitations despite the confinement of lattice fermions. In a finite chain we observe the doubling of the period of Friedel oscillations which paves the way towards experimental detection of confinement in this system. We discuss the possibility of a Mott phase at the commensurate filling 2/3.

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.124.120503

Coupling ultracold matter to dynamical gauge fields in optical lattices: From flux attachment to Z2 lattice gauge theories

L. Barbiero, C. Schweizer, M. Aidelsburger, E. Demler, N. Goldman and F. Grusdt.

Science Advances 5, (2019).

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From the standard model of particle physics to strongly correlated electrons, various physical settings are formulated in terms of matter coupled to gauge fields. Quantum simulations based on ultracold atoms in optical lattices provide a promising avenue to study these complex systems and unravel the underlying many-body physics. Here, we demonstrate how quantized dynamical gauge fields can be created in mixtures of ultracold atoms in optical lattices, using a combination of coherent lattice modulation with strong interactions. Specifically, we propose implementation of Z2 lattice gauge theories coupled to matter, reminiscent of theories previously introduced in high-temperature superconductivity. We discuss a range of settings from zero-dimensional toy models to ladders featuring transitions in the gauge sector to extended two-dimensional systems. Mastering lattice gauge theories in optical lattices constitutes a new route toward the realization of strongly correlated systems, with properties dictated by an interplay of dynamical matter and gauge fields.

DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aav7444

Floquet approach to Z2 lattice gauge theories with ultracold atoms in optical lattices

C. Schweizer, F. Grusdt, M. Berngruber, L. Barbiero, E. Demler, N. Goldman, I. Bloch, M. Aidelsburger.

Nature Physics (2019).

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Quantum simulation has the potential to investigate gauge theories in strongly-interacting regimes, which are up to now inaccessible through conventional numerical techniques. Here, we take a first step in this direction by implementing a Floquet-based method for studying Z2 lattice gauge theories using two-component ultracold atoms in a double-well potential. For resonant periodic driving at the on-site interaction strength and an appropriate choice of the modulation parameters, the effective Floquet Hamiltonian exhibits Z2 symmetry. We study the dynamics of the system for different initial states and critically contrast the observed evolution with a theoretical analysis of the full time-dependent Hamiltonian of the periodically-driven lattice model. We reveal challenges that arise due to symmetry-breaking terms and outline potential pathways to overcome these limitations. Our results provide important insights for future studies of lattice gauge theories based on Floquet techniques.

DOI: 10.1038/s41567-019-0649-7

String patterns in the doped Hubbard model

C. S. Chiu, G. Ji, A. Bohrdt, M. Xu, M. Knap, E. Demler, F. Grusdt, M. Greiner, D. Greif.

Science 365, 251-256 (2019).

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Understanding strongly correlated quantum many-body states is one of the most difficult challenges in modern physics. For example, there remain fundamental open questions on the phase diagram of the Hubbard model, which describes strongly correlated electrons in solids. In this work, we realize the Hubbard Hamiltonian and search for specific patterns within the individual images of many realizations of strongly correlated ultracold fermions in an optical lattice. Upon doping a cold-atom antiferromagnet, we find consistency with geometric strings, entities that may explain the relationship between hole motion and spin order, in both pattern-based and conventional observables. Our results demonstrate the potential for pattern recognition to provide key insights into cold-atom quantum many-body systems.

DOI: 10.1126/science.aav3587

Classifying snapshots of the doped Hubbard model with machine learning

A. Bohrdt, C. S. Chiu, G. Ji, M. Xu, D. Greif, M. Greiner, E. Demler, F. Grusdt und M. Knap.

Nature Physics (2019).

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Quantum gas microscopes for ultracold atoms can provide high-resolution real-space snapshots of complex many-body systems. We implement machine learning to analyse and classify such snapshots of ultracold atoms. Specifically, we compare the data from an experimental realization of the two-dimensional Fermi–Hubbard model to two theoretical approaches: a doped quantum spin liquid state of resonating valence bond type (1,2), and the geometric string theory (3,4), describing a state with hidden spin order. This technique considers all available information without a potential bias towards one particular theory by the choice of an observable and can therefore select the theory that is more predictive in general. Up to intermediate doping values, our algorithm tends to classify experimental snapshots as geometric-string-like, as compared to the doped spin liquid. Our results demonstrate the potential for machine learning in processing the wealth of data obtained through quantum gas microscopy for new physical insights.

DOI: 10.1038/s41567-019-0565-x

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