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Quantum states and phases in driven open quantum systems with cold atoms

Abstract

An open quantum system, the time evolution of which is governed by a master equation, can be driven into a given pure quantum state by an appropriate design of the coupling between the system and the reservoir. This provides a route towards preparing many-body states and non-equilibrium quantum phases by quantum-reservoir engineering. Here, we discuss the example of a driven dissipative Bose–Einstein condensate of bosons and of paired fermions, where atoms in an optical lattice are coupled to a bath of Bogoliubov excitations and the atomic current represents local dissipation. In the absence of interactions, the lattice gas is driven into a pure state with long-range order. Weak interactions lead to a weakly mixed state, which in three dimensions can be understood as a depletion of the condensate, and in one and two dimensions exhibits properties reminiscent of a Luttinger liquid or a Kosterlitz–Thouless critical phase at finite temperature, with the role of the ‘finite temperature’ taken by the interactions.

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Figure 1: Driven dissipative condensate.
Figure 2: Appearance of quasi-long-range order during the time evolution.

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Acknowledgements

We thank E. Altman, E. Demler and M. Lukin for discussions. Work at the University of Innsbruck is supported by the Austrian Science Foundation and EU grants SCALA and OLAQI.

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Correspondence to S. Diehl.

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Diehl, S., Micheli, A., Kantian, A. et al. Quantum states and phases in driven open quantum systems with cold atoms. Nature Phys 4, 878–883 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1038/nphys1073

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