Mueller Research Group

Department of Physics

Laboratory of Atomic and Solid State Physics

Cornell UniversityIthaca, NY • 14853 • (607)255-1568

Ultracold Atom Theory


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Retrograde Motion

News from our Group

  • Topological Physics: when pushing to the left moves particles to the right

    In a recent preprint, Ran Wei and Erich Mueller analyze a quantum analog of Archimede's screw -- a topological quantum pump. First explored in the theoretical physics litterature from the 80's [Thouless, Phys. Rev. B 27, 6083 (1983)], such pumps give a mechanism for moving particles around in quantized units. Of particular interest is the anomalous regime where the particles move in the opposite direction from the driving force. Wei and Mueller showed that this pumping action is readily observable in cold atoms. The figure on the left illustrates a pump made by two optical lattices, one sliding relative to the other. The atomic locations are marked by circles in the deepest wells. As the lattice slides, the atoms tunnel oposite the sliding direction.


[ Ultracold GasesVortices and Topological DefectsBEC-BCS CrossoverRF SpectroscopyPublicationsPresentations ]
simulation of interference between atomic clouds

Ultracold Gases

At room temperatures the behavior of a gas of atoms is dominated by their random thermal motion. Averaged over time this gives simple descriptions in terms of thermodynamic variables such as Temperature and Pressure. As the temperature is lowered, this thermal motion is reduced. The Heisenberg uncertainty principle prevents the atoms from coming to a stop. Instead, at nanokelvin temperatures, quantum mechanics dictates the properties of these atomic gases. We study this strange and beautiful form of quantum matter. (more)

Summer Group Meetings

  • Tuesday - May 12 - Choudhury - 11:30am, 516 Clark Hall
  • Thursday May 14 - Choudhury - 11am, 470 Physical Sciences Building (PSB)
  • Tuesday May 19 - Dutta - 11:30am, 516 Clark Hall
  • Thuursday May 21 - Dutta - 11am, 470 Physical Sciences Building (PSB)
  • Tuesday May 26 -- Reichl -- 11am, 609 Clark Hall
  • Thursday May 28 -- Reichl -- 11am, 470 PSB
  • Tuesday June 2 -- Sundar -- 11am, 609 Clark Hall
  • Thursday June 4 -- Sundar -- 11am, 609 Clark Hall
  • Tuesday June 9 -- Wei -- 11am, 609 Clark Hall
  • Thurssday June 11 -- Wei -- 11am, 609 Clark Hall
  • Remainder of summer: Tuesdays + Thursdays at 11am in 609 Clark.

Over the summer we will be having journal-club style group meetings. Our first article will be: cond-mat/9503150. It is a long review, so it will take a few weeks to go through it. We will go alphabetically by last name: The room schedule is on the left