RSS icon
Twitter icon
Facebook icon
Vimeo icon
YouTube icon

Engineering gauge fields: concept to reality

September 19, 2013 -
2:00pm to 3:00pm
Ian Spielman


Here I present our experimental work on Bose-Einstein condensates, systems of ultra-cold charge neutral atoms at a
temperature of about 100 nano-Kelvin: about one billion times colder than room temperature. These condensates -- quantum gases -- are nearly perfect quantum mechanical systems, and here we demonstrate a technique by which these charge neutral particles behave as do charged particles do in magnetic and electric fields.Quantum gases are remarkable systems with a truly unprecedented level of experimental control. One application of this control is to engineer the strongly interacting many-particle systems usually associated with condensed matter physics. We use a pair of lasers to couple different quantum states of the atoms into new "laser-dressed" states which are imbued with an effective charge. In agreement with theory, we observe that above a critical coupling strength our BEC acts as a charged Bose gas in the presence of a conventional vec tor potential. Below this critical Raman coupling, the system
has well defined spin degrees of freedom and acts like a spin-1/2 Bose gas with spin-orbit coupling.

1201 Physics Building
College Park, MD 20742

Subscribe to A Quantum Bit 

Quantum physics began with revolutionary discoveries in the early twentieth century and continues to be central in today’s physics research. Learn about quantum physics, bit by bit. From definitions to the latest research, this is your portal. Subscribe to receive regular emails from the quantum world. Previous Issues...

Sign Up Now

Sign up to receive A Quantum Bit in your email!

 Have an idea for A Quantum Bit? Submit your suggestions to