Quantum gas magnifier for sub-lattice-resolved imaging of 3D quantum systems
© MARK GARLICK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty Images
A novel way to image 3D quantum systems will allow researchers to explore systems that were previously unobservable.
Since large quantum systems such as complex molecules and normal materials are too challenging to analyse, physicists will often construct quantum systems that mimic the properties of more complex systems.
A common example of such an artificial system is a grid of ultracold atoms suspended in ‘hammocks’ created by interacting laser beams. Imaging 2D ‘egg-carton’ arrays of atoms is easy enough, but problems occur when trying to image 3D arrays.
Now, a team led by researchers from the University of Hamburg has demonstrated a clever way to look at 3D quantum systems that involves magnifying the spatial distribution of the ultracold atoms by up to 90 times before optical imaging. The magnification is based on the wave-like nature of the ultracold-atom array.
The technique promises to enable physicists to probe unexplored quantum systems.
- Nature 599, 571–575 (2021). doi: 10.1038/s41586-021-04011-2
|University of Hamburg (UHH), Germany||1.00|