How do elementary constituents of matter interact with each other?
One of the great challenges in modern physical sciences concerns the identification of elementary constituents of matter, and the manner by which these particles interact with each other. This fundamental problem occurs in many areas of physics including high-energy, condensed matter and quantum computation. While there have been remarkable achievements, confirming the existence of a plethora of elementary particles and novel exotic phases of matter, many fundamental questions remain unanswered due to the great complexity of the problem. One of the most prominent examples in this regard is the still incomplete knowledge of the phase diagram of Quantum Chromodynamics, which describes the strong interaction between quarks and gluons.
Progress - Particles - Ions - Photons - Atoms
Due to the vast progress in controlling individual particles including ions, photons and atoms, it has been suggested that quantum simulations could offer new insights on open questions related to the fundamental interactions between (quasi-)particles, which are mediated by gauge fields. Originally the concept of quantum simulation was proposed by Nobel-prize winner Richard Feynman. The key idea is to engineer a quantum many-body system that is tailored to emulate the properties of a given theoretical model, hence, offering a clear view on fundamental physical phenomena of interest in a controlled laboratory environment. Engineered quantum systems made of ultracold atoms in optical lattices emerged as versatile platforms to study the properties of exotic quantum phases of matter.
Simulating gauge fields, however, is extremely demanding, since it requires the precise implementation of matter particles and gauge fields, which interact in a way that has to respect the local symmetry of the gauge theory of interest.
Team - Physicists - LMU - Munich - Max
A team of physicists at LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (MPQ), led by Professor Monika Aidelsburger and Professor Immanuel Bloch, carefully designed and successfully realized...
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