Publications

Adiabatic Quantum Search in Open Systems
Wild, Dominik S., Gopalakrishnan, Sarang, Knap, Michael, Yao, Norman Y. and Lukin, Mikhail D.
Phys. Rev. Lett. , Volume 117(150501)
October 2016

Abstract: Adiabatic quantum algorithms represent a promising approach to universal quantum computation. In isolated systems, a key limitation to such algorithms is the presence of avoided level crossings, where gaps become extremely small. In open quantum systems, the fundamental robustness of adiabatic algorithms remains unresolved. Here, we study the dynamics near an avoided level crossing associated with the adiabatic quantum search algorithm, when the system is coupled to a generic environment. At zero temperature, we find that the algorithm remains scalable provided the noise spectral density of the environment decays sufficiently fast at low frequencies. By contrast, higher order scattering processes render the algorithm inefficient at any finite temperature regardless of the spectral density, implying that no quantum speedup can be achieved. Extensions and implications for other adiabatic quantum algorithms will be discussed.

Regimes of heating and dynamical response in driven many-body localized systems
Gopalakrishnan, Sarang, Knap, Michael and Demler, Eugene
Phys. Rev. B , Volume 94(094201)
September 2016

Abstract: We explore the response of many-body localized (MBL) systems to periodic driving of arbitrary amplitude, focusing on the rate at which they exchange energy with the drive. To this end, we introduce an infinite-temperature generalization of the effective “heating rate” in terms of the spread of a random walk in energy space. We compute this heating rate numerically and estimate it analytically in various regimes. When the drive amplitude is much smaller than the frequency, this effective heating rate is given by linear response theory with a coefficient that is proportional to the optical conductivity; in the opposite limit, the response is nonlinear and the heating rate is a nontrivial power law of time. We discuss the mechanisms underlying this crossover in the MBL phase. We comment on implications for the subdiffusive thermal phase near the MBL transition, and for response in imperfectly isolated MBL systems.

Spin structure factors of chiral quantum spin liquids on the kagome lattice
Halimeh, Jad C. and Punk, Matthias
Phys. Rev. B , Volume 94(104413)
September 2016

Abstract: We calculate dynamical spin structure factors for gapped chiral spin liquid states in the spin-1/2 Heisenberg antiferromagnet on the kagome lattice using Schwinger-boson mean-field theory. In contrast to static (equal-time) structure factors, the dynamical structure factor shows clear signatures of time-reversal symmetry breaking for chiral spin liquid states. In particular, momentum inversion k→−k symmetry as well as the sixfold rotation symmetry around the Γ point are lost. We highlight other interesting features, such as a relatively flat onset of the two-spinon continuum for the cuboc1 state. Our work is based on the projective symmetry group classification of time-reversal symmetry breaking Schwinger-boson mean-field states by Messio, Lhuillier, and Misguich.

Coulomb potentials and Taylor expansions in time-dependent density-functional theory
Fournais, Søren, Lampert, Jonas, Lewin, Mathieu and Østergaard Sørensen, Thomas
Phys. Rev. A , Volume 92(062510)
June 2016

Abstract: We investigate when Taylor expansions can be used to prove the Runge-Gross theorem, which is at the foundation of time-dependent density-functional theory (TDDFT). We start with a general analysis of the conditions for the Runge-Gross argument, especially the time differentiability of the density. The latter should be questioned in the presence of singular (e.g., Coulomb) potentials. Then we show that a singular potential in a one-body operator considerably decreases the class of time-dependent external potentials to which the original argument can be applied. A two-body singularity has an even stronger impact and an external potential is essentially incompatible with it. For the Coulomb interaction and all reasonable initial many-body states, the Taylor expansion only exists to a finite order, except for constant external potentials. Therefore, high-order Taylor expansions are not the right tool to study atoms and molecules in TDDFT.

Ubiquity of Exciton Localization in Cryogenic Carbon Nanotubes
Hofmann, Matthias, Noe, Jonathan, Kneer, Alexander, Crochet, Jared and Högele, Alexander
Nano Lett. , Volume 16(5), page: 2958–2962
April 2016

Abstract: We present photoluminescence studies of individual semiconducting single-wall carbon nanotubes at room and cryogenic temperatures. From the analysis of spatial and spectral features of nanotube photoluminescence, we identify characteristic signatures of unintentional exciton localization. Moreover, we quantify the energy scale of exciton localization potentials as ranging from a few to a few tens of millielectronvolts and stemming from both environmental disorder and shallow covalent side-wall defects. Our results establish disorder-induced crossover from the diffusive to the localized regime of nanotube excitons at cryogenic temperatures as a ubiquitous phenomenon in micelle-encapsulated and as-grown carbon nanotubes.

Griffiths effects and slow dynamics in nearly many-body localized systems
Gopalakrishnan, Sarang, Agarwal, Kartiek, Demler, Eugene A., Huse, David A. and Knap, Michael
Phys. Rev. B , Volume 93(134206)
April 2016

Abstract: The low-frequency response of systems near a many-body localization transition can be dominated by rare regions that are locally critical or “in the other phase.” It is known that in one dimension, these rare regions can cause the dc conductivity and diffusion constant to vanish even inside the delocalized thermal phase. Here, we present a general analysis of such Griffiths effects in the thermal phase near the many-body localization transition: we consider both one-dimensional and higher-dimensional systems, subject to quenched randomness, and discuss both linear response (including the frequency- and wave-vector-dependent conductivity) and more general dynamics. In all the regimes we consider, we identify observables that are dominated by rare-region effects. In some cases (one-dimensional systems and Floquet systems with no extensive conserved quantities), essentially all long-time local observables are dominated by rare-region effects; in others, generic observables are instead dominated by hydrodynamic long-time tails throughout the thermal phase, and one must look at specific probes, such as spin echo, to see Griffiths behavior.

Quantum Phase Transition and Protected Ideal Transport in a Kondo Chain
Tsvelik, A. M. and Yevtushenko, O. M.
PRL , Volume 115(216402)
November 2015

Abstract: We study the low energy physics of a Kondo chain where electrons from a one-dimensional band interact with magnetic moments via an anisotropic exchange interaction. It is demonstrated that the anisotropy gives rise to two different phases which are separated by a quantum phase transition. In the phase with easy plane anisotropy, Z2 symmetry between sectors with different helicity of the electrons is broken. As a result, localization effects are suppressed and the dc transport acquires (partial) symmetry protection. This effect is similar to the protection of the edge transport in time-reversal invariant topological insulators. The phase with easy axis anisotropy corresponds to the Tomonaga-Luttinger liquid with a pronounced spin-charge separation. The slow charge density wave modes have no protection against localization.

Massive Goldstone (Higgs) mode in two-dimensional ultracold atomic lattice systems
Liu, Longxiang, Chen, Kun, Deng, Youjin, Endress, Manuel, Pollet, Lode and Prokof'ev, Nikolay
Phys. Rev. B , Volume 92(174521)
November 2015

Abstract: We discuss how to reveal the massive Goldstone mode, often referred to as the Higgs amplitude mode, near the superfluid-to-insulator quantum critical point (QCP) in a system of two-dimensional ultracold bosonic atoms in optical lattices. The spectral function of the amplitude response is obtained by analytic continuation of the kinetic energy correlation function calculated by Monte Carlo methods. Our results enable a direct comparison with the recent experiment [M. Endres, T. Fukuhara, D. Pekker, M. Cheneau, P. Schauß, C. Gross, E. Demler, S. Kuhr, and I. Bloch, Nature (London) 487, 454 (2012)] and demonstrate a good agreement for temperature shifts induced by lattice modulation. Based on our numerical analysis, we formulate the necessary conditions in terms of homogeneity, detuning from the QCP and temperature in order to reveal the massive Goldstone resonance peak in spectral functions experimentally. We also propose to apply a local modulation at the trap center to overcome the inhomogeneous broadening caused by the parabolic trap confinement.

Prethermal Floquet Steady States and Instabilities in the Periodically Driven, Weakly Interacting Bose-Hubbard Model
Bukov, Marin, Gopalakrishnan, Sarang, Knap, Michael and Demler, Eugene
Phys. Rev. Lett. , Volume 115(205301)
November 2015

Abstract: We explore prethermal Floquet steady states and instabilities of the weakly interacting two-dimensional Bose-Hubbard model subject to periodic driving. We develop a description of the nonequilibrium dynamics, at arbitrary drive strength and frequency, using a weak-coupling conserving approximation. We establish the regimes in which conventional (zero-momentum) and unconventional [(π,π)-momentum] condensates are stable on intermediate time scales. We find that condensate stability is enhanced by increasing the drive strength, because this decreases the bandwidth of quasiparticle excitations and thus impedes resonant absorption and heating. Our results are directly relevant to a number of current experiments with ultracold bosons.

Far-from-Equilibrium Field Theory of Many-Body Quantum Spin Systems: Prethermalization and Relaxation of Spin Spiral States in Three Dimensions
Babadi, Mehrtash, Demler, Eugene and Knap, Michael
Phys. Rev. X , Volume 5(041005)
October 2015

Abstract: We study theoretically the far-from-equilibrium relaxation dynamics of spin spiral states in the three-dimensional isotropic Heisenberg model. The investigated problem serves as an archetype for understanding quantum dynamics of isolated many-body systems in the vicinity of a spontaneously broken continuous symmetry. We present a field-theoretical formalism that systematically improves on the mean field for describing the real-time quantum dynamics of generic spin-1/2 systems. This is achieved by mapping spins to Majorana fermions followed by a 1/N expansion of the resulting two-particle-irreducible effective action. Our analysis reveals rich fluctuation-induced relaxation dynamics in the unitary evolution of spin spiral states. In particular, we find the sudden appearance of long-lived prethermalized plateaus with diverging lifetimes as the spiral winding is tuned toward the thermodynamically stable ferro- or antiferromagnetic phases. The emerging prethermalized states are characterized by different bosonic modes being thermally populated at different effective temperatures and by a hierarchical relaxation process reminiscent of glassy systems. Spin-spin correlators found by solving the nonequilibrium Bethe-Salpeter equation provide further insight into the dynamic formation of correlations, the fate of unstable collective modes, and the emergence of fluctuation-dissipation relations. Our predictions can be verified experimentally using recent realizations of spin spiral states with ultracold atoms in a quantum gas microscope [S. Hild et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 113, 147205 (2014)].

Microscopic Characterization of Scalable Coherent Rydberg Superatoms
Zeiher, J., Schauss, P., Hild, S., Macri, T., Bloch, I. and Gross, C.
Physical Review X , Volume 5(031015)
August 2015

Abstract: Strong interactions can amplify quantum effects such that they become important on macroscopic scales. Controlling these coherently on a single-particle level is essential for the tailored preparation of strongly correlated quantum systems and opens up new prospects for quantum technologies. Rydberg atoms offer such strong interactions, which lead to extreme nonlinearities in laser-coupled atomic ensembles. As a result, multiple excitation of a micrometer-sized cloud can be blocked while the light-matter coupling becomes collectively enhanced. The resulting two-level system, often called a “superatom,” is a valuable resource for quantum information, providing a collective qubit. Here, we report on the preparation of 2 orders of magnitude scalable superatoms utilizing the large interaction strength provided by Rydberg atoms combined with precise control of an ensemble of ultracold atoms in an optical lattice. The latter is achieved with sub-shot-noise precision by local manipulation of a two-dimensional Mott insulator. We microscopically confirm the superatom picture by in situ detection of the Rydberg excitations and observe the characteristic square-root scaling of the optical coupling with the number of atoms. Enabled by the full control over the atomic sample, including the motional degrees of freedom, we infer the overlap of the produced many-body state with a W state from the observed Rabi oscillations and deduce the presence of entanglement. Finally, we investigate the breakdown of the superatom picture when two Rydberg excitations are present in the system, which leads to dephasing and a loss of coherence.

Spatially Resolved Detection of a Spin-Entanglement Wave in a Bose-Hubbard Chain
Fukuhara, T., Hild, S., Zeiher, J., Schauss, P., Bloch, I., Endres, M. and Gross, C.
Physical Review Letters , Volume 115(035302)
July 2015

Abstract: Entanglement is an essential property of quantum many-body systems. However, its local detection is challenging and was so far limited to spin degrees of freedom in ion chains. Here we measure entanglement between the spins of atoms located on two lattice sites in a one-dimensional BoseHubbard chain which features both local spin- and particle-number fluctuations. Starting with an initially localized spin impurity, we observe an outwards propagating entanglement wave and show quantitatively how entanglement in the spin sector rapidly decreases with increasing particle-number fluctuations in the chain.

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