Detecting fractional Chern insulators through circular dichroism

Par Cécile Repellin, Post-Doctoral Fellow, MIT, USA

Lundi 17 Décembre, 14h00, Salle des séminaires (215), 2e étage, Bâtiment A4N

Abstract :

Great efforts are currently devoted to the engineering of topological Bloch bands in ultracold atomic gases. Recent achievements in this direction, together with the possibility of tuning inter-particle interactions, suggest that strongly-correlated states reminiscent of fractional quantum Hall (FQH) liquids could soon be generated in these systems. In this experimental framework, where transport measurements are limited, identifying unambiguous signatures of FQH-like states constitutes a challenge on its own. Here, we demonstrate that the fractional nature of the quantized Hall conductance, a fundamental characteristic of FQH states, could be detected in ultracold gases through a circular-dichroic measurement, namely, by monitoring the energy absorbed by the atomic cloud upon a circular drive. We validate this approach by comparing the circular-dichroic signal to the many-body Chern number, and discuss how such measurements could be performed to distinguish FQH-type states from competing states. Our scheme offers a practical tool for the detection of topologically-ordered states in quantum-engineered systems, with potential applications in solid state.