Quantum optics with ytterbium atom arrays

Coherent collective dynamics in ytterbium atom arrays

The nuclear spin of 171Yb atoms naturally provides a prototypical, robust qubit both in the ground 1S0 and clock 3P0 levels. Its great potential has been recently demonstrated in exciting optical-tweezer arrays experiments [Jenkins et al., Phys. Rev. X 12, 021027 (2022) and Ma et al., Phys. Rev. X 12, 021028 (2022)]. Additionally, the ultranarrow optical clock transition allows for optically manipulating quantum information stored in the nuclear spins. Leveraging such versatility, we will investigate the atomic collective response to an optical driving in shortly-spaced ordered arrays. Owing to the interference between the excitation light and the light scattered by adjacent atoms, ordered arrays exhibit collective dynamics whenever the inter-atomic spacing is shorter or comparable with the excitation light wavelength, and may efficiently confine delocalized excitations into subradiant states of the array [see Chang et al., Rev. Mod. Phys. 90, 031002 (2018) and Shahmoon et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 113601 (2017)].

A short inter-atomic spacing is essential to enhance such collective light-atom behaviour, and spacings below a micrometer can be engineered for ytterbium atoms through short-wavelength optical lattices or tweezer arrays. At the same time, ytterbium possesses long-wavelength transitions in the telecome range which connect the clock state to higher lying triplet D-states, making Yb atom arrays an ideal playground to explore quantum optical cooperative phenomena.

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