Ultracold polar molecules offer a wide range of exciting research directions owing to their long-range anisotropic dipole-dipole interactions. Proposed applications span the fields of ultracold chemistry, precision measurement, quantum simulation and quantum computation. The prospect of using quantum simulators to elucidate a range of intractable problems in condensed-matter physics has attracted particular attention. In many cases, the simulation protocol requires an ultracold gas of fermionic particles with long-range interactions confined in an optical lattice.
The goal of this project is to realise a gas of ultracold fermionic KCs molecules by associating pre-cooled atoms of K and Cs. This molecule has the advantage over other bi-alkali molecules of being stable against reactive collisions and offers both fermionic and bosonic isotopes. By confining the molecules in an array of two-dimensional pancake traps we will deliver a test platform for quantum simulation applications. This trap geometry is suited to the study of a large range of physical phenomena, including high-TC BCS-like interlayer super- fluidity, quantum magnetism and topological superfluid phases.To achieve this ambitious objective we propose to combine state-of-the-art experiments in synergy with world leading theoretical support into a transformative program of research that stands to cement the UK's position at the forefront of an exciting international field.
This project is also part of QSUM (Quantum Science with Ultracold Molecules), see https://www.qsum.org.uk for more information.
"A Stable Quantum Gas of Fermionic Polar Molecules" EPSRC EP/N007085/1 (January 2016 - December 2019)
"QSUM: Quantum Science with Ultracold Molecules" EPSRC EP/P01058X/1 (June 2017 - May 2022)