Volume 118, Number 5, June 2017
|Number of page(s)
|Condensed Matter: Structural, Mechanical and Thermal Properties
|09 August 2017
Protocols for dynamically probing topological edge states and dimerization with fermionic atoms in optical potentials
1 School of Natural Sciences, University of California - Merced, CA 95343, USA
2 Dept. of Physics and Astronomy, Dartmouth College - Hanover, NH 03755, USA
Received: 28 February 2017
Accepted: 18 July 2017
Topological behavior has been observed in quantum systems including ultracold atoms. However, background harmonic traps for cold atoms hinder the direct detection of topological edge states arising at the boundary because the distortion fuses the edge states into the bulk. We propose experimentally feasible protocols to probe localized edge states and dimerization of ultracold fermions. By confining cold atoms in a ring lattice and changing the boundary condition from periodic to open using an off-resonant laser sheet to cut open the ring, topological edge states can be generated. A lattice in a topological configuration can trap a single particle released at the edge as the system evolves in time. Alternatively, depleting an initially filled lattice away from the boundary reveals the occupied edge states. Signatures of dimerization in the presence of contact interactions can be found in selected correlations as the system boundary suddenly changes from periodic to open and exhibit memory effects of the initial state distinguishing different configurations.
PACS: 67.85.-d – Ultracold gases, trapped gases / 71.10.Fd – Lattice fermion models (Hubbard model, etc.) / 03.65.Vf – Phases: geometric; dynamic or topological
© EPLA, 2017
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