Signatures of many-body localization in a controlled open quantum system

Henrik P. Lüschen, Pranjal Bordia, Sean S. Hodgman, Michael Schreiber, Saubhik Sarkar, Andrew J. Daley, Mark H. Fischer, Ehud Altman, Immanuel Bloch, Ulrich Schneider

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

74 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In the presence of disorder, an interacting closed quantum system can undergo many-body localization (MBL) and fail to thermalize. However, over long times, even weak couplings to any thermal environment will necessarily thermalize the system and erase all signatures of MBL. This presents a challenge for experimental investigations of MBL since no realistic system can ever be fully closed. In this work, we experimentally explore the thermalization dynamics of a localized system in the presence of controlled dissipation. Specifically, we find that photon scattering results in a stretched exponential decay of an initial density pattern with a rate that depends linearly on the scattering rate. We find that the resulting susceptibility increases significantly close to the phase transition point. In this regime, which is inaccessible to current numerical studies, we also find a strong dependence on interactions. Our work provides a basis for systematic studies of MBL in open systems and opens a route towards extrapolation of closed-system properties from experiments.

LanguageEnglish
Article number011034
Number of pages13
JournalPhysical Review X
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Mar 2017

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signatures
thermal environments
transition points
scattering
extrapolation
dissipation
routes
disorders
magnetic permeability
photons
decay
interactions

Keywords

  • atomic and molecular physics
  • condensed matter physics

Cite this

Lüschen, H. P., Bordia, P., Hodgman, S. S., Schreiber, M., Sarkar, S., Daley, A. J., ... Schneider, U. (2017). Signatures of many-body localization in a controlled open quantum system. Physical Review X, 7(1), [011034]. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevX.7.011034
Lüschen, Henrik P. ; Bordia, Pranjal ; Hodgman, Sean S. ; Schreiber, Michael ; Sarkar, Saubhik ; Daley, Andrew J. ; Fischer, Mark H. ; Altman, Ehud ; Bloch, Immanuel ; Schneider, Ulrich. / Signatures of many-body localization in a controlled open quantum system. In: Physical Review X. 2017 ; Vol. 7, No. 1.
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Lüschen, HP, Bordia, P, Hodgman, SS, Schreiber, M, Sarkar, S, Daley, AJ, Fischer, MH, Altman, E, Bloch, I & Schneider, U 2017, 'Signatures of many-body localization in a controlled open quantum system' Physical Review X, vol. 7, no. 1, 011034. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevX.7.011034

Signatures of many-body localization in a controlled open quantum system. / Lüschen, Henrik P.; Bordia, Pranjal; Hodgman, Sean S.; Schreiber, Michael; Sarkar, Saubhik; Daley, Andrew J.; Fischer, Mark H.; Altman, Ehud; Bloch, Immanuel; Schneider, Ulrich.

In: Physical Review X, Vol. 7, No. 1, 011034, 21.03.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Daley, Andrew J.

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AU - Schneider, Ulrich

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Lüschen HP, Bordia P, Hodgman SS, Schreiber M, Sarkar S, Daley AJ et al. Signatures of many-body localization in a controlled open quantum system. Physical Review X. 2017 Mar 21;7(1). 011034. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevX.7.011034