Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Beyond quantum simulation: JILA physicists create 'crystal' of spin-swapping ultracold gas molecules

This is an illustration of the interaction energies between ultracold potassium-rubidium molecules trapped in a lattice made of intersecting laser beams. The colors indicate each molecule's interaction with the molecule located in the center of the lattice (green), for a specific magnetic-field direction (purple arrow). Blue indicates attractive interactions, and red indicates repulsive interactions. Darker colors indicate higher interaction energy.

Credit: Jacob Covey, JILA
This is an illustration of the interaction energies between ultracold potassium-rubidium molecules trapped in a lattice made of intersecting laser beams. The colors indicate each molecule's interaction with the molecule located in the center of the lattice (green), for a specific magnetic-field direction (purple arrow). Blue indicates attractive interactions, and red indicates repulsive interactions. Darker colors indicate higher interaction energy.

Credit: Jacob Covey, JILA

Abstract:
Physicists at JILA have created a crystal-like arrangement of ultracold gas molecules that can swap quantum "spin" properties with nearby and distant partners. The novel structure might be used to simulate or even invent new materials that derive exotic properties from quantum spin behavior, for electronics or other practical applications.

Beyond quantum simulation: JILA physicists create 'crystal' of spin-swapping ultracold gas molecules

Boulder, CO | Posted on September 18th, 2013

Described in a Nature paper* posted online on Sept. 18, 2013, the JILA experiment is the first to record ultracold gas molecules exchanging spins at a distance, a behavior that may be similar to that of intriguing solids such as "frustrated" magnets with competing internal forces, or high-temperature superconductors, which transmit electricity without resistance. The new results build on the same JILA team's prior creation of the first molecular quantum gases and demonstrations of ultracold chemistry.**

JILA is a joint institute of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Colorado Boulder.

"One of the main thrusts for our cold molecules research was to realize this interaction, so this is a major breakthrough," NIST/JILA Fellow Jun Ye says. "We can now explore very exotic new phases of quantum systems." NIST/JILA Fellow Deborah Jin points out that "these interactions are advantageous for creating models of quantum magnetism because they do not require the molecules to move around" the crystal structure.

The new JILA crystal has advantages over other experimental quantum simulators, which typically use atoms. Molecules, made of two or more atoms, have a broader range of properties, and thus, might be used to simulate more complex materials. Jin and Ye are especially interested in using the structure to create new materials not found in nature. An example might be topological insulators—a hot topic in physics—which might transmit data encoded in various spin patterns in future transistors, sensors or quantum computers.

The molecules used in the JILA experiments are made of one potassium atom bonded to one rubidium atom. The molecules are polar, with a positive electric charge at the rubidium end and a negative charge at the potassium end. This feature means the molecules can interact strongly and can be controlled with electric fields.

In the latest experiment, about 20,000 molecules were trapped in an optical lattice, an ordered pattern that looks like a stack of egg cartons created by intersecting laser beams. The lattice was only partly filled, with about one molecule per every 10 lattice wells. The lattice suppressed the molecules' travel and chemical reactions, allowing their internal properties to guide interactions.

The JILA team used microwave pulses to manipulate the molecules' spins, or natural rotations around an axis—similar to a spinning top—to create a "superposition" of two opposite spins at the same time. Scientists then observed oscillating patterns in the average spin of all the molecules, as well as a falloff or decay in the spin signal over time, indicating the molecules were swapping spins.

Scientists calculated the interaction energy that each molecule experiences with all other molecules in the lattice, with the energy intensity depending on the distance and angle between pairs (see graphic). JILA theorist Ana Maria Ray's modeling of spin oscillations and time periods agreed with the experimental measurements. Ye says the spin-swapping interactions "entangle" the molecules, a signature feature of the quantum world that links the properties of physically separated particles.

The results are expected to open up a new field in which scientists create customized molecular spin models in solid-like structures held in place by the lattice. JILA scientists plan to fill the lattice more fully and add an external electric field to increase the variety of spin models that can be created.

###

The research was funded by NIST, the National Science Foundation, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, the Army Research Office, the Department of Energy and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

* B. Yan, S.A. Moses, B. Gadway, J.P. Covey, K.R.A. Hazzard, A.M. Rey, D.S. Jin and J. Ye. Realizing a lattice spin model with polar molecules. Nature. Advance Online Publication, Sept. 18, 2013.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Laura Ost

303-497-4880

Copyright © National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

** See 2008 NIST news release, "JILA Scientists Create First Dense Gas of Ultracold 'Polar' Molecules," at:

2010 NIST news release, "Seeing the Quantum in Chemistry" JILA Scientists Control Chemical Reactions of Ultracold Molecules," at:

Related News Press

Physics

Solid state physics: Quantum matter stuck in unrest August 1st, 2015

Meet the high-performance single-molecule diode: Major milestone in molecular electronics scored by Berkeley Lab and Columbia University team July 29th, 2015

News and information

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Harris & Harris Group Portfolio Company, HZO, Announces Partnerships with Dell and Motorola August 1st, 2015

Advances and Applications in Biosensing, Sensor Power, and Sensor R&D to be Covered at Sensors Global Summit August 1st, 2015

Kalam: versatility personified August 1st, 2015

Laboratories

Springer and Tsinghua University Press present the second Nano Research Award: Paul Alivisatos of the University of California Berkeley receives the honor for outstanding contributions in nanoscience July 30th, 2015

Sol-gel capacitor dielectric offers record-high energy storage July 30th, 2015

Meet the high-performance single-molecule diode: Major milestone in molecular electronics scored by Berkeley Lab and Columbia University team July 29th, 2015

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Self-assembling, biomimetic membranes may aid water filtration August 1st, 2015

Kalam: versatility personified August 1st, 2015

Heating and cooling with light leads to ultrafast DNA diagnostics July 31st, 2015

Theoretical Physicists at Freie Universität Berlin Develop New Insights into Interface between Classical and Quantum Worlds July 31st, 2015

Discoveries

Gold-diamond nanodevice for hyperlocalised cancer therapy: Gold nanorods can be used as remote controlled nanoheaters delivering the right amount of thermal treatment to cancer cells, thanks to diamond nanocrystals used as temperature sensors August 1st, 2015

Shaping the hilly landscapes of a semi-conductor nanoworld August 1st, 2015

Solid state physics: Quantum matter stuck in unrest August 1st, 2015

Self-assembling, biomimetic membranes may aid water filtration August 1st, 2015

Announcements

Self-assembling, biomimetic membranes may aid water filtration August 1st, 2015

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Harris & Harris Group Portfolio Company, HZO, Announces Partnerships with Dell and Motorola August 1st, 2015

Advances and Applications in Biosensing, Sensor Power, and Sensor R&D to be Covered at Sensors Global Summit August 1st, 2015

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

Gold-diamond nanodevice for hyperlocalised cancer therapy: Gold nanorods can be used as remote controlled nanoheaters delivering the right amount of thermal treatment to cancer cells, thanks to diamond nanocrystals used as temperature sensors August 1st, 2015

Shaping the hilly landscapes of a semi-conductor nanoworld August 1st, 2015

Solid state physics: Quantum matter stuck in unrest August 1st, 2015

Self-assembling, biomimetic membranes may aid water filtration August 1st, 2015

Military

Self-assembling, biomimetic membranes may aid water filtration August 1st, 2015

Take a trip through the brain July 30th, 2015

Sol-gel capacitor dielectric offers record-high energy storage July 30th, 2015

Reshaping the solar spectrum to turn light to electricity: UC Riverside researchers find a way to use the infrared region of the sun's spectrum to make solar cells more efficient July 27th, 2015

Quantum nanoscience

Solid state physics: Quantum matter stuck in unrest August 1st, 2015

Theoretical Physicists at Freie Universität Berlin Develop New Insights into Interface between Classical and Quantum Worlds July 31st, 2015

Detecting small metallic contaminants in food via magnetization: A practical metallic-contaminant detecting system using three high-Tc RF superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs) July 29th, 2015

Drawing a line between quantum and classical world: Bell's Inequality fails as a test of the boundary July 21st, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project