Project Level: Honours, Summer

Utracold atoms in optical lattices provide an elegant, reconfigurable arena for exploring many-body quantum physics in a precisely controlled way.  In particular they can be used to probe how the features of dynamical chaos (a classical phenomenon of nonlinear systems) survive in the quantum regime.  This project will map out the phase-space of novel lattice systems (with enough degrees of freedom to show chaos in the classical limit, yet small enough such that a quantum description is tractable) and map chaotic features onto the Wigner distribution of the corresponding quantum state.  A key goal will be to understand the role of apparent chaotic behaviour in the thermalisation of isolated quantum systems.  The project will involve a combination of analytic and computational work. Prior computational experience (in any language) would be an advantage. 

Project members

Dr Joel Corney

Head of Physics & Deputy Head of School, Discipline H
School of Mathematics and Physics