Quantum Matter


Welcome to the Quantum Matter Group!

We are performing experiments to explore many body quantum physics with ultracold atoms and molecules. We are located at the Centre for Quantum Technologies (CQT) hosted by the National University of Singapore.

We have open postdoc and PhD positions.

6Li molecular quantum gas in a large volume transport trap

We report on an efficient production scheme for a large quantum degenerate sample of fermionic lithium. The approach is based on our previous work on narrow-line 2S1/2→3P3/2 laser cooling resulting in a high phase-space density of up to 3x10-4. This allows utilizing a large volume crossed optical dipole trap with a total power of 45 W, leading to high loading efficiency and 8x106 trapped atoms. The same optical trapping configuration is used for rapid adiabatic transport over a distance of 25 cm in 0.9 s, and subsequent evaporative cooling. With optimized evaporation we achieve a degenerate Fermi gas with 1.7x106 atoms at a temperature of 60 nK, corresponding to T/TF=0.16(2). Furthermore, the performance is demonstrated by evaporation near a broad Feshbach resonance creating a molecular Bose-Einstein condensate of 3x105 lithium dimers.

All-optical production and transport of a large 6Li quantum gas in a crossed optical dipole trap, Ch. Gross, H. C. J. Gan, and K. Dieckmann, Phys. Rev. A, 93, 053424 (2016).


ICOLS 2015, Singapore

The 22nd International Conference on Laser Spectroscopy took place on 28 Jun - Jul 3, 2015 in Singapore. The conference was organized by the Centre for Quantum Technologies (CQT).

Thank you for travelling to Singapore and your contributions to a successful conference!

More ICOLS pictures are available in our gallery section.


Narrow-line cooling of fermionic lithium

We report an experimental study of peak and phase-space density of a two-stage magneto-optical trap (MOT) of 6Li atoms, which exploits the narrower 2S1/2→3P3/2 ultra-violet (UV) transition at 323nm following trapping and cooling on the more common D2 transition at 671nm. The UV MOT is loaded from a red MOT and is compressed to give a high phase-space density up to 3x10-4. Temperatures as low as 33μK are achieved on the UV transition. We study the density limiting factors and in particular find a value for the light-assisted collisional loss coefficient of 1.3(±0.4)x10-10cm3/s for low repumping intensity.

Two-stage magneto-optical trapping and narrow-line cooling of 6Li atoms to high phase-space density, J. Sebastian, Ch. Gross, Ke Li, H. C. J. Gan, Wenhui Li, and K. Dieckmann, Phys. Rev. A, 90, 033417 (2014).


Guest Lecture Series by Prof. J.T.M. Walraven

Prof. Walraven, University of Amsterdam, is visiting our group from Jan until May, 2014. Throughout the semester he will teach this fully creditable module:

PC5239: "Quantum gases collisions and statistics"
This course introduces basic concepts of the physics of ultra-cold quantum gases - low-density gases of neutral atoms studied at (sub)microkelvin temperatures. Quantum gases are important both from the fundamental point of view and for their potential application in quantum information processing. The course is focused on quantum collisions and quantum statistics as these phenomena provide the underpinning for the very existence of the field. A systematic introduction is given into the quantum mechanics of low-energy collisions and the consequences of the quantum statistical nature of the collision partners for the behavior of the gas. The students will learn to distinguish between varieties of collisional phenomena and understand their consequences both from the kinetic and the thermodynamic point of view.
Module flyer.


ICOLS2015 in Singapore

The 22nd International Conference on Laser Spectroscopy will take place in Singapore.

ICOLS 2015 will be held on June 28 - Jul 3, at the Shangri La - Rasa Sentosa Resort on Sentosa Island. The conference organization is supported by the Centre for Quantum Technologies (CQT), which is located at the National University of Singapore (NUS).

Further information: ICOLS2015 website.


Streetview of our labs

CQT´s picture wizard Daniel Oi photorgraphed one of our labs with a wide angle lens, stitched the shots together, and made them available in streetview style. Zoom into our lab here.


Megahertz precision wavelength measurement

In an industry collaboration with TEM Messtechnik GmbH, Hannover, Germany, we report on a calibration procedure that enhances the precision of an interferometer based frequency stabilization by several orders of magnitude. For this purpose, the frequency deviations of the stabilization are measured precisely by means of a frequency comb. This allows us to implement several calibration steps that compensate different systematic errors. The resulting frequency deviation is shown to be less than 5.7 MHz (rms 1.6 MHz) in the whole wavelength interval 750795 nm. Wide tuning of a stabilized laser at this exceptional precision is demonstrated.

Calibrating an interferometric laser frequency stabilization to megahertz precision, J. F. S. Brachmann, T. Kinder, and Kai Dieckmann, Applied Optics Vol. 51, Iss. 22, pp. 55175521 (2012).


Magic wavelengths for mass- and spin-imbalanced mixtures in 1D optical lattices

In a collaborative theoretical study by researchers from Munich, Innsbruck, Bologna, Lyon, Wyoming, Santa Barbara, and Singapore we present a systematic investigation of attractive binary mixtures in the presence of both spin- and massimbalance in one-dimensional setups described by the Hubbard model. After discussing typical cold atomic experimental realizations and the relation between microscopic and effective parameters, we study several many-body features of trapped Fermi-Fermi and Bose-Bose mixtures such as density profiles, momentum distributions, and correlation functions by means of density-matrix-renormalization-group and quantum Monte Carlo simulations. In particular, we focus on the stability of Fulde-Ferrell-Larkin-Ovchinnikov, dimer, and trimer fluids in inhomogeneous situations, as typically realized in cold gas experiments due to the harmonic confinement. We finally consider possible experimental signatures of these phases both in the presence of a finite polarization and of a finite temperature.

Dimer, trimer, and Fulde-Ferrell-Larkin-Ovchinnikov liquids in mass- and spin-imbalanced trapped binary mixtures in one dimension, M. Dalmonte, K. Dieckmann, T. Roscilde, C. Hartl, A. E. Feiguin, U. Schollwck, and F. Heidrich-Meisner, Phys. Rev. A 85, 063608, (2012).


Image © Daniel Oi.
Shared frequency comb system started operation

For our experiments with ultracold atoms and molecules we recently installed a commercial frequency comb system that can serve as a frequency reference for multiple application lasers. The system is operating in our lab and sharing the frequency comb with two other laboratories in CQT. We are using a sub-kiloherz linewidth diode laser stabilized to a highly stable optical reference resonator (design - courtesy by Max-Planck-Institute for Quantum Optics, Munich, Germany.) in order to improve the short time stability of the comb system.

A popular note can be found among the CQT highlights.


Narrow s-Wave Feshbach Resonance

We investigate s-wave interactions in a two-species Fermi-Fermi mixture of 6Li and 40K. We develop for this case the method of cross-dimensional relaxation and find from a kinetic model, Monte Carlo simulations, and measurements that the individual relaxation rates differ due to the mass difference. The method is applied to measure the elastic cross section at the Feshbach resonance that we previously used for the production of heteronuclear molecules. Location (B0=154.71(5) G) and width are determined for this resonance. This reveals that molecules are being produced on the atomic side of the resonance within a range related to the Fermi energies, therefore establishing the first observation of a many body effect in the crossover regime of a narrow Feshbach resonance.

s-Wave Interaction in a Two-Species Fermi-Fermi Mixture at a Narrow Feshbach Resonance, L. Costa, J. Brachmann, A.-C. Voigt, C. Hahn, M. Taglieber, T.W. Hänsch, and K. Dieckmann, Phys. Rev. Lett. 105, 123201, (2010)


Transfer of Experiment from Munich to Singapore

In March 2010 we transfered the experimental setup from Munich to Singapore. The experiment had been developed in the group of Prof. Hänsch at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich.

Picture Gallery: Move to Singapore


Stable Bosonic Heteronuclear Molecules

We report on the first creation of ultracold bosonic heteronuclear molecules of two fermionic species, 6Li and 40K, by a magnetic field sweep across an interspecies s-wave Feshbach resonance. This allows us to associate up to 4×104 molecules with high efficiencies of up to 50%. Using direct imaging of the molecules, we measure increased lifetimes of the molecules close to resonance of more than 100ms in the molecule-atom mixture stored in a harmonic trap.

Ultracold Heteronuclear Fermi-Fermi Molecules, A.-C. Voigt, M. Taglieber, L. Costa, T. Aoki, W. Wieser, T. W. Hänsch, and K. Dieckmann, Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 020405, (2009)
Science Editors Choice (Science, 323, (2009), p563)
Online article in Pro-Physik: Ultrakalte Molekle aus ungleichen Fermi-Atomen


Quantum Degeneracy in Fermi-Fermi Mixture

We report on the generation of a quantum degenerate Fermi-Fermi mixture of two different atomic species. The quantum degenerate mixture is realized employing sympathetic cooling of fermionic 6Li and 40K gases by an evaporatively cooled bosonic 87Rb gas. We describe the combination of trapping and cooling methods that proved crucial to successfully cool the mixture. In particular, we study the last part of the cooling process and show that the efficiency of sympathetic cooling of the 6Li gas by 87Rb is increased by the presence of 40K through catalytic cooling. Because of the differing physical properties of the two components, the quantum degenerate 6Li-40K Fermi-Fermi mixture is an excellent candidate for a stable, heteronuclear system allowing the study of several so far unexplored types of quantum matter.

Quantum Degenerate Two-Species Fermi-Fermi Mixture Coexisting with a Bose-Einstein Condensate, M. Taglieber, A.-C. Voigt, T. Aoki, T. W. Hänsch, and K. Dieckmann, Phys. Rev. Lett. 100, 010401, (2008)


Triple Magneto-Optical Trap

We report on the simultaneous trapping of two fermionic species, 6Li and 40K, and a bosonic species, 87Rb demonstrating the first three-species magneto-optical trap: "Triple MOT". The apparatus including the atom sources and the three laser systems is described, and the single-species MOTs and the triple MOT are characterized. In triple MOT operation, typical atom numbers of 3.2×107 for 6Li, 1.5×107 for 40K, and 5.4×109 for 87Rb were achieved. Trap loss due to interspecies collisions was observed.We describe our way to optimize the triple MOT and turn it into a suitable source for the goal to achieve quantum degeneracy by evaporative and sympathetic cooling.

Quantum Degenerate Two-Species Fermi-Fermi Mixture Coexisting with a Bose-Einstein Condensate, M. Taglieber, A.-C. Voigt, F. Henkel, S. Fray, T. W. Hänsch, and K. Dieckmann, Phys. Rev. A. 73, 011402(R), (2006)