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978-3-8439-0286-1, Reihe Physik
Multi-Component Quantum Gases in Optical Lattices
148 Seiten, Dissertation Universität Hamburg (2010), Softcover, B5
Hexagonal structures occur in a vast variety of systems, ranging from honeycombs of bees in life sciences to carbon nanotubes in material sciences. The latter, in particular its unfolded two-dimensional layered form, graphene, has rapidly grown to one of the most discussed topics in condensed-matter physics due to its unique properties. In quantum optics, ultracold quantum gases confined in periodic light fields – so-called optical lattices – have been shown to be general and versatile instruments to simulate and study condensed-matter systems. However, so far most experiments have been performed in cubic lattice geometries only.
This work combines the uniqueness of hexagonal lattice geometries with the versatility provided by ultracold atoms and presents the very first experimental realization of a graphene-like optical lattice loaded with a multi-component Bose-Einstein condensate. Considerable changes of the spatial distribution and the energetic structure, and a novel orbital ground-state phase are discovered. These are supported by different theoretical approaches which are developed and discussed here.