*Polymers (Basel) ; 12(10)2020 Sep 24.*

##### RESUMO

Superabsorbent polymers (SAP) are of major interest as materials to control the cement hydration process. The swelling behavior of the SAPs significantly influences the performance of the resulting concrete by slowly releasing polymer-bound water in order to maintain a consistent w/c value. A round-robin test conducted by the RILEM Technical Committee 260-RSC showed that the same batch of polymer can lead to large deviations in concrete performance and this was assumed to originate in different storage conditions of the SAP. In this contribution the change in the performance of two SAPs, a crosslinked poly(acrylate) and a crosslinked poly(acrylate-co-acrylamide), was assessed after ageing in standard climate, at 50 °C, and under UV irradiation. During storage in standard climate or 50 °C, ageing led to dehydration of the SAP, and this subsequently led to a higher water uptake during swelling. By contrast, UV irradiation reduced the water uptake, most likely as a result of photo-crosslinking. Dynamic water vapor sorption experiments indicated a strong dependence of the water uptake on both the ambient humidity and the temperature. As a result, cement mixtures containing SAP must be calculated on the dry mass of the SAP rather than the actual weight on site. A standard procedure of how to pack and handle SAP to be used in concrete is also provided.

*Phys Rev Lett ; 123(23): 230504, 2019 Dec 06.*

##### RESUMO

We demonstrate quantum many-body state reconstruction from experimental data generated by a programmable quantum simulator by means of a neural-network model incorporating known experimental errors. Specifically, we extract restricted Boltzmann machine wave functions from data produced by a Rydberg quantum simulator with eight and nine atoms in a single measurement basis and apply a novel regularization technique to mitigate the effects of measurement errors in the training data. Reconstructions of modest complexity are able to capture one- and two-body observables not accessible to experimentalists, as well as more sophisticated observables such as the Rényi mutual information. Our results open the door to integration of machine learning architectures with intermediate-scale quantum hardware.

*Phys Rev Lett ; 122(17): 173201, 2019 May 03.*

##### RESUMO

We demonstrate single-atom resolved imaging with a survival probability of 0.99932(8) and a fidelity of 0.99991(1), enabling us to perform repeated high-fidelity imaging of single atoms in tweezers thousands of times. We further observe lifetimes under laser cooling of more than seven minutes, an order of magnitude longer than in previous tweezer studies. Experiments are performed with strontium atoms in 813.4 nm tweezer arrays, which is at a magic wavelength for the clock transition. Tuning to this wavelength is enabled by off-magic Sisyphus cooling on the intercombination line, which lets us choose the tweezer wavelength almost arbitrarily. We find that a single not retroreflected cooling beam in the radial direction is sufficient for mitigating recoil heating during imaging. Moreover, this cooling technique yields temperatures below 5 µK, as measured by release and recapture. Finally, we demonstrate clock-state resolved detection with average survival probability of 0.996(1) and average state detection fidelity of 0.981(1). Our work paves the way for atom-by-atom assembly of large defect-free arrays of alkaline-earth atoms, in which repeated interrogation of the clock transition is an imminent possibility.

*Nature ; 568(7751): 207-211, 2019 04.*

##### RESUMO

Quantum phase transitions (QPTs) involve transformations between different states of matter that are driven by quantum fluctuations1. These fluctuations play a dominant part in the quantum critical region surrounding the transition point, where the dynamics is governed by the universal properties associated with the QPT. Although time-dependent phenomena associated with classical, thermally driven phase transitions have been extensively studied in systems ranging from the early Universe to Bose-Einstein condensates2-5, understanding critical real-time dynamics in isolated, non-equilibrium quantum systems remains a challenge6. Here we use a Rydberg atom quantum simulator with programmable interactions to study the quantum critical dynamics associated with several distinct QPTs. By studying the growth of spatial correlations when crossing the QPT, we experimentally verify the quantum Kibble-Zurek mechanism (QKZM)7-9 for an Ising-type QPT, explore scaling universality and observe corrections beyond QKZM predictions. This approach is subsequently used to measure the critical exponents associated with chiral clock models10,11, providing new insights into exotic systems that were not previously understood and opening the door to precision studies of critical phenomena, simulations of lattice gauge theories12,13 and applications to quantum optimization14,15.

*Carbohydr Polym ; 208: 108-114, 2019 Mar 15.*

##### RESUMO

In this paper we describe the preparation of alkanoic acid-based aqueous chitosan solutions, which show no sign of acid-catalysed depolymerisation over time - something commonly accompanying other preparation methods. Longer chitosan chains have previously been shown to exhibit more advantageous biological activities, and constant viscosities are essential for consistent quality in biomedical applications. Avoiding acid-catalysed depolymerisation requires careful control of the stoichiometry between the free amino groups of chitosan and the appropriate solubilising acid. Acetic and butyric acid are both suitable solubilising agents, but chitosan butyrate exhibits lower solution viscosities due to a combined electric and steric shielding of the chains. These solutions dry into clear transparent films that remain fully water soluble and absorb up to 70 wt% of water from 90%-RH vapour phase at 25 °C. The absorption follows simple first-order kinetics and the rate constants increase with increasing humidity up to approx. 71%-RH, where a metastable chitosan trihydrate salt appears to be formed. Desorption is slightly faster, but more complex, as it exhibits two distinct first-order processes. In addition, films prepared in this way are thermally more stable than the usual chitosan hydrochloride.

*Phys Rev Lett ; 121(12): 123603, 2018 Sep 21.*

##### RESUMO

Individual neutral atoms excited to Rydberg states are a promising platform for quantum simulation and quantum information processing. However, experimental progress to date has been limited by short coherence times and relatively low gate fidelities associated with such Rydberg excitations. We report progress towards high-fidelity quantum control of Rydberg-atom qubits. Enabled by a reduction in laser phase noise, our approach yields a significant improvement in coherence properties of individual qubits. We further show that this high-fidelity control extends to the multi-particle case by preparing a two-atom entangled state with a fidelity exceeding 0.97(3), and extending its lifetime with a two-atom dynamical decoupling protocol. These advances open up new prospects for scalable quantum simulation and quantum computation with neutral atoms.

*Nature ; 551(7682): 579-584, 2017 11 29.*

##### RESUMO

Controllable, coherent many-body systems can provide insights into the fundamental properties of quantum matter, enable the realization of new quantum phases and could ultimately lead to computational systems that outperform existing computers based on classical approaches. Here we demonstrate a method for creating controlled many-body quantum matter that combines deterministically prepared, reconfigurable arrays of individually trapped cold atoms with strong, coherent interactions enabled by excitation to Rydberg states. We realize a programmable Ising-type quantum spin model with tunable interactions and system sizes of up to 51 qubits. Within this model, we observe phase transitions into spatially ordered states that break various discrete symmetries, verify the high-fidelity preparation of these states and investigate the dynamics across the phase transition in large arrays of atoms. In particular, we observe robust many-body dynamics corresponding to persistent oscillations of the order after a rapid quantum quench that results from a sudden transition across the phase boundary. Our method provides a way of exploring many-body phenomena on a programmable quantum simulator and could enable realizations of new quantum algorithms.

*ChemistryOpen ; 6(5): 681, 2017 10.*

##### RESUMO

[This corrects the article DOI: 10.1002/open.201600105.].

*ChemistryOpen ; 6(1): 137-148, 2017 Feb.*

##### RESUMO

Decomposition of transition-metal amidinates [M{MeC(NiPr)2} n ] [M(AMD) n ; M=MnII, FeII, CoII, NiII, n=2; CuI, n=1) induced by microwave heating in the ionic liquids (ILs) 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium tetrafluoroborate ([BMIm][BF4]), 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium hexafluorophosphate ([BMIm][PF6]), 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium trifluoromethanesulfonate (triflate) ([BMIm][TfO]), and 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium tosylate ([BMIm][Tos]) or in propylene carbonate (PC) gives transition-metal nanoparticles (M-NPs) in non-fluorous media (e.g. [BMIm][Tos] and PC) or metal fluoride nanoparticles (MF2-NPs) for M=Mn, Fe, and Co in [BMIm][BF4]. FeF2-NPs can be prepared upon Fe(AMD)2 decomposition in [BMIm][BF4], [BMIm][PF6], and [BMIm][TfO]. The nanoparticles are stable in the absence of capping ligands (surfactants) for more than 6â weeks. The crystalline phases of the metal or metal fluoride synthesized in [BMIm][BF4] were identified by powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD) to exclusively Ni- and Cu-NPs or to solely MF2-NPs for M=Mn, Fe, and Co. The size and size dispersion of the nanoparticles were determined by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) to an average diameter of 2(±2) to 14(±4)â nm for the M-NPs, except for the Cu-NPs in PC, which were 51(±8)â nm. The MF2-NPs from [BMIm][BF4] were 15(±4) to 65(±18)â nm. The average diameter from TEM is in fair agreement with the size evaluated from PXRD with the Scherrer equation. The characterization was complemented by energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX). Electrochemical investigations of the CoF2-NPs as cathode materials for lithium-ion batteries were simply evaluated by galvanostatic charge/discharge profiles, and the results indicated that the reversible capacity of the CoF2-NPs was much lower than the theoretical value, which may have originated from the complex conversion reaction mechanism and residue on the surface of the nanoparticles.

*Science ; 354(6315): 1024-1027, 2016 11 25.*

##### RESUMO

The realization of large-scale fully controllable quantum systems is an exciting frontier in modern physical science. We use atom-by-atom assembly to implement a platform for the deterministic preparation of regular one-dimensional arrays of individually controlled cold atoms. In our approach, a measurement and feedback procedure eliminates the entropy associated with probabilistic trap occupation and results in defect-free arrays of more than 50 atoms in less than 400 milliseconds. The technique is based on fast, real-time control of 100 optical tweezers, which we use to arrange atoms in desired geometric patterns and to maintain these configurations by replacing lost atoms with surplus atoms from a reservoir. This bottom-up approach may enable controlled engineering of scalable many-body systems for quantum information processing, quantum simulations, and precision measurements.

*Science ; 352(6289): 1094-7, 2016 May 27.*

##### RESUMO

Topology and geometry are essential to our understanding of modern physics, underlying many foundational concepts from high-energy theories, quantum information, and condensed-matter physics. In condensed-matter systems, a wide range of phenomena stem from the geometry of the band eigenstates, which is encoded in the matrix-valued Wilson line for general multiband systems. Using an ultracold gas of rubidium atoms loaded in a honeycomb optical lattice, we realize strong-force dynamics in Bloch bands that are described by Wilson lines and observe an evolution in the band populations that directly reveals the band geometry. Our technique enables a full determination of band eigenstates, Berry curvature, and topological invariants, including single- and multiband Chern and Z2 numbers.

*Phys Rev Lett ; 115(23): 236803, 2015 Dec 04.*

##### RESUMO

We propose a hexagonal optical lattice system with spatial variations in the hopping matrix elements. Just like in the valley Hall effect in strained graphene, for atoms near the Dirac points the variations in the hopping matrix elements can be described by a pseudomagnetic field and result in the formation of Landau levels. We show that the pseudomagnetic field leads to measurable experimental signatures in momentum resolved Bragg spectroscopy, Bloch oscillations, cyclotron motion, and quantization of in situ densities. Our proposal can be realized by a slight modification of existing experiments. In contrast to previous methods, pseudomagnetic fields are realized in a completely static system avoiding common heating effects and therefore opening the door to studying interaction effects in Landau levels with cold atoms.

*Phys Rev Lett ; 115(3): 035302, 2015 Jul 17.*

##### RESUMO

Entanglement is an essential property of quantum many-body systems. However, its local detection is challenging and was so far limited to spin degrees of freedom in ion chains. Here we measure entanglement between the spins of atoms located on two lattice sites in a one-dimensional Bose-Hubbard chain which features both local spin- and particle-number fluctuations. Starting with an initially localized spin impurity, we observe an outwards propagating entanglement wave and show quantitatively how entanglement in the spin sector rapidly decreases with increasing particle-number fluctuations in the chain.

*Nature ; 502(7469): 76-9, 2013 Oct 03.*

##### RESUMO

The existence of bound states of elementary spin waves (magnons) in one-dimensional quantum magnets was predicted almost 80 years ago. Identifying signatures of magnon bound states has so far remained the subject of intense theoretical research, and their detection has proved challenging for experiments. Ultracold atoms offer an ideal setting in which to find such bound states by tracking the spin dynamics with single-spin and single-site resolution following a local excitation. Here we use in situ correlation measurements to observe two-magnon bound states directly in a one-dimensional Heisenberg spin chain comprising ultracold bosonic atoms in an optical lattice. We observe the quantum dynamics of free and bound magnon states through time-resolved measurements of two spin impurities. The increased effective mass of the compound magnon state results in slower spin dynamics as compared to single-magnon excitations. We also determine the decay time of bound magnons, which is probably limited by scattering on thermal fluctuations in the system. Our results provide a new way of studying fundamental properties of quantum magnets and, more generally, properties of interacting impurities in quantum many-body systems.

*Nature ; 491(7422): 87-91, 2012 Nov 01.*

##### RESUMO

The ability to control and tune interactions in ultracold atomic gases has paved the way for the realization of new phases of matter. So far, experiments have achieved a high degree of control over short-range interactions, but the realization of long-range interactions has become a central focus of research because it would open up a new realm of many-body physics. Rydberg atoms are highly suited to this goal because the van der Waals forces between them are many orders of magnitude larger than those between ground-state atoms. Consequently, mere laser excitation of ultracold gases can cause strongly correlated many-body states to emerge directly when atoms are transferred to Rydberg states. A key example is a quantum crystal composed of coherent superpositions of different, spatially ordered configurations of collective excitations. Here we use high-resolution, in situ Rydberg atom imaging to measure directly strong correlations in a laser-excited, two-dimensional atomic Mott insulator. The observations reveal the emergence of spatially ordered excitation patterns with random orientation, but well-defined geometry, in the high-density components of the prepared many-body state. Together with a time-resolved analysis, this supports the description of the system in terms of a correlated quantum state of collective excitations delocalized throughout the gas. Our experiment demonstrates the potential of Rydberg gases to realize exotic phases of matter, thereby laying the basis for quantum simulations of quantum magnets with long-range interactions.

*Nature ; 487(7408): 454-8, 2012 Jul 25.*

##### RESUMO

Spontaneous symmetry breaking plays a key role in our understanding of nature. In relativistic quantum field theory, a broken continuous symmetry leads to the emergence of two types of fundamental excitation: massless Nambu-Goldstone modes and a massive 'Higgs' amplitude mode. An excitation of Higgs type is of crucial importance in the standard model of elementary particle physics, and also appears as a fundamental collective mode in quantum many-body systems. Whether such a mode exists in low-dimensional systems as a resonance-like feature, or whether it becomes overdamped through coupling to Nambu-Goldstone modes, has been a subject of debate. Here we experimentally find and study a Higgs mode in a two-dimensional neutral superfluid close to a quantum phase transition to a Mott insulating phase. We unambiguously identify the mode by observing the expected reduction in frequency of the onset of spectral response when approaching the transition point. In this regime, our system is described by an effective relativistic field theory with a two-component quantum field, which constitutes a minimal model for spontaneous breaking of a continuous symmetry. Additionally, all microscopic parameters of our system are known from first principles and the resolution of our measurement allows us to detect excited states of the many-body system at the level of individual quasiparticles. This allows for an in-depth study of Higgs excitations that also addresses the consequences of the reduced dimensionality and confinement of the system. Our work constitutes a step towards exploring emergent relativistic models with ultracold atomic gases.

*Nature ; 481(7382): 484-7, 2012 Jan 25.*

##### RESUMO

In relativistic quantum field theory, information propagation is bounded by the speed of light. No such limit exists in the non-relativistic case, although in real physical systems, short-range interactions may be expected to restrict the propagation of information to finite velocities. The question of how fast correlations can spread in quantum many-body systems has been long studied. The existence of a maximal velocity, known as the Lieb-Robinson bound, has been shown theoretically to exist in several interacting many-body systems (for example, spins on a lattice)--such systems can be regarded as exhibiting an effective light cone that bounds the propagation speed of correlations. The existence of such a 'speed of light' has profound implications for condensed matter physics and quantum information, but has not been observed experimentally. Here we report the time-resolved detection of propagating correlations in an interacting quantum many-body system. By quenching a one-dimensional quantum gas in an optical lattice, we reveal how quasiparticle pairs transport correlations with a finite velocity across the system, resulting in an effective light cone for the quantum dynamics. Our results open perspectives for understanding the relaxation of closed quantum systems far from equilibrium, and for engineering the efficient quantum channels necessary for fast quantum computations.

*Phys Rev Lett ; 106(21): 215301, 2011 May 27.*

##### RESUMO

We experimentally demonstrate coherent light scattering from an atomic Mott insulator in a two-dimensional lattice. The far-field diffraction pattern of small clouds of a few hundred atoms was imaged while simultaneously laser cooling the atoms with the probe beams. We describe the position of the diffraction peaks and the scaling of the peak parameters by a simple analytic model. In contrast to Bragg scattering, scattering from a single plane yields diffraction peaks for any incidence angle. We demonstrate the feasibility of detecting spin correlations via light scattering by artificially creating a one-dimensional antiferromagnetic order as a density wave and observing the appearance of additional diffraction peaks.

*Nature ; 471(7338): 319-24, 2011 Mar 17.*

##### RESUMO

Ultracold atoms in optical lattices provide a versatile tool with which to investigate fundamental properties of quantum many-body systems. In particular, the high degree of control of experimental parameters has allowed the study of many interesting phenomena, such as quantum phase transitions and quantum spin dynamics. Here we demonstrate how such control can be implemented at the most fundamental level of a single spin at a specific site of an optical lattice. Using a tightly focused laser beam together with a microwave field, we were able to flip the spin of individual atoms in a Mott insulator with sub-diffraction-limited resolution, well below the lattice spacing. The Mott insulator provided us with a large two-dimensional array of perfectly arranged atoms, in which we created arbitrary spin patterns by sequentially addressing selected lattice sites after freezing out the atom distribution. We directly monitored the tunnelling quantum dynamics of single atoms in the lattice prepared along a single line, and observed that our addressing scheme leaves the atoms in the motional ground state. The results should enable studies of entropy transport and the quantum dynamics of spin impurities, the implementation of novel cooling schemes, and the engineering of quantum many-body phases and various quantum information processing applications.

*Nature ; 467(7311): 68-72, 2010 Sep 02.*

##### RESUMO

The reliable detection of single quantum particles has revolutionized the field of quantum optics and quantum information processing. For several years, researchers have aspired to extend such detection possibilities to larger-scale, strongly correlated quantum systems in order to record in situ images of a quantum fluid in which each underlying quantum particle is detected. Here we report fluorescence imaging of strongly interacting bosonic Mott insulators in an optical lattice with single-atom and single-site resolution. From our images, we fully reconstruct the atom distribution on the lattice and identify individual excitations with high fidelity. A comparison of the radial density and variance distributions with theory provides a precise in situ temperature and entropy measurement from single images. We observe Mott-insulating plateaus with near-zero entropy and clearly resolve the high-entropy rings separating them, even though their width is of the order of just a single lattice site. Furthermore, we show how a Mott insulator melts with increasing temperature, owing to a proliferation of local defects. The ability to resolve individual lattice sites directly opens up new avenues for the manipulation, analysis and applications of strongly interacting quantum gases on a lattice. For example, one could introduce local perturbations or access regions of high entropy, a crucial requirement for the implementation of novel cooling schemes.