Recent news

We have an open post-doctoral position on the lattice team! See the details here

Michael Messer defended his PhD thesis on February 2nd. Congratulations!

Lorenz Hruby received the EGAS poster prize! Congratulations!

Julian Léonard defended his PhD thesis on May 16th. Congratulations !

Recently published

Coupling two order parameters in a quantum gas, arXiv:1711.07988 (2017)

Metastability and avalanche dynamics in strongly-correlated gases with long-range interactions, arXiv:1708.00229v3 (2017)

Enhancement and sign change of magnetic correlations in a driven quantum many-body system. arXiv:1708.06751 (2017) and Nature 553, 481-485 (2018). See also the press release.

Assembling a mesoscopic lattice in a quantum wire for ultracold fermions, arXiv:1708.01250 (2017)

Monitoring and manipulating Higgs and Goldstone modes in a supersolid quantum gas, Science 358, 1415-1418 (2017) and arXiv:1704.05803 (2017). See also the press release.

Controlling the Floquet state population and observing micromotion in a periodically driven two-body quantum system, Phys. Rev. A 96, 053602 (2017) and arXiv:1703.07767 (2017)

Welcome to Prof. Tilman Esslinger's Quantum Optics Group

In our research we use ultracold atoms to synthetically create key models in quantum many-body physics. The properties of the trapped quantum gases are governed by the interplay between atomic motion and a well characterized interaction between the particles. This conceptual simplicity is unique in experimental physics and provides a direct link between the experiment and the model describing the system. It enables us to shine new light on a wide range of fundamental phenomena and address open challenges. We explore the physics of quantum phase transitions and crossovers, low-dimensional systems and non-equilibrium dynamics, and thereby establish the basis for quantum simulation of many-body Hamiltonians.

For example, by loading a quantum degenerate gas of potassium atoms into the periodic potential of an optical lattice we realize Hubbard models with atoms and access superfluid, metallic and Mott-insulating phases. A many-body system with infinitely long-range interactions is formed by trapping a Bose-Einstein condensate inside an optical cavity, which has allowed us to observe the Dicke quantum phase transition from a normal to a superradiant phase. We also work on extending the concepts of quantum simulations to device-like structures connected to atomic reservoirs, using a combination of high-resolution microscopy and transport measurements.


We acknowledge funding from SNF and ETH Zurich, NCCR QSIT, NCCR MaNEP and the European Union (ERC advanced grant SQMS, FET Open NAMEQUAM, FET Open TherMIQ) and collaboration with qubig.