TH Theoretical Seminar

Atomic Quantum Simulations of Abelian and non-Abelian Gauge Theories

by Uwe-Jens Wiese (Bern)

Wednesday, 29 January 2014 from to (Europe/Zurich)
at CERN ( 4-3-006 - TH Conference Room )
Using a Fermi-Bose mixture of ultra-cold atoms in an optical lattice, in a collaboration of atomic and particle physicists, we have constructed a quantum simulator for a U(1) gauge theory coupled to fermionic matter. The construction is based on quantum link models which realize continuous gauge symmetry with discrete quantum variables. At low energies, quantum link models with staggered fermions emerge from a Hubbard-type model which can be quantum simulated. This allows investigations of string breaking as well as the real-time evolution after a quench in gauge theories, which are inaccessible to classical simulation methods. Similarly, using ultracold alkaline-earth atoms in optical lattices, we have constructed a quantum simulator for U(N) and SU(N) lattice gauge theories with fermionic matter based on quantum link models. These systems share qualitative features with QCD, including chiral symmetry breaking and restoration at non-zero temperature or baryon density. Unlike classical simulations, a quantum simulator does not suffer from sign problems and can address the corresponding chiral dynamics in real time.