Multiple-time-scale Landau-Zener transitions in many-body systems

27 Jan 2015  ·  Larson Jonas ·

Motivated by recent cold atom experiments in optical lattices, we consider a lattice version of the Landau-Zener problem. Every single site is described by a Landau-Zener problem, but due to particle tunnelling between neighboring lattice sites this onsite single particle Landau-Zener dynamics couples to the particle motion within the lattice... The lattice, apart from having a dephasing effect on single site Landau-Zener transitions, also implies, in the presence of a confining trap, an inter-site particle flow induced by the Landau-Zener sweeping. This gives rise to an interplay between intra- and inter-site dynamics. The adiabaticity constrain is therefor not simply given by the standard one; the Hamiltonian rate of change relative to the gap of the onsite problem. In experimentally realistic situations, the full system evolution is well described by Franck-Condon physics, e.g. non-adiabatic excitations are predominantly external ones characterized by large phononic vibrations in the atomic cloud, while internal excitations are very weak as close to perfect onsite transitions take place. read more

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