Thursday, June 6, 2013

1306.1190 (Dario Hügel et al.)

Chiral Ladders and the Edges of Chern Insulators    [PDF]

Dario Hügel, Belén Paredes
The realization and detection of topological phases with ultracold atomic gases is at the frontier of current theoretical and experimental research. Here, we identify cold atoms in optical ladders subjected to synthetic magnetic fields as readily realizable bridges between one-dimensional spin-orbit (time reversal) topological insulators and two-dimensional Chern insulators. We reveal three instances of their promising potential: i) they realize spin-orbit coupling, with the left-right leg degree of freedom playing the role of an effective spin, ii) their energy bands and eigenstates exactly reproduce the topological chiral edge modes of two-dimensional Chern insulators, and iii) they can be tailored to realize a topological phase transition from a trivial to a topological insulating phase. We propose realistic schemes to observe the chiral and topological properties of ladder systems with current optical lattice-based experiments. Our findings open a door to the exploration of the physics of the edges of Chern insulators and to the realization of spin-orbit coupling and topological superfluid phases with ultracold atomic gases.
View original:

No comments:

Post a Comment