• Quantum Control and Quantum Chaos in Atomic Spin Systems

      Jessen, Poul S.; Chaudhury, Souma; Jessen, Poul S.; Cronin, Alexander; Jones, Ronald J. (The University of Arizona., 2008)
      Laser-cooled atoms offer an excellent platform for testing new ideas of quantum control and measurement. I will discuss experiments where we use light and magnetic fields to drive and monitor non-trivial quantum dynamics of a large spin-angular momentum associated with an atomic hyperfine ground state. We can design Hamiltonians to generate arbitrary spin states and perform a full quantum state reconstruction of the results. We have implemented and verified time optimal controls to generate a broad variety of spin states, including spin-squeezed states useful for metrology. Yields achieved are of the range 0.8-0.9.We present a first experimental demonstration of the quantum kicked top, a popular paradigm for quantum and classical chaos. We make `movies' of the evolving quantum state which provides a direct observation of phase space dynamics of this system. The spin dynamics seen in the experiment includes dynamical tunneling between regular islands, rapid spreading of states throughout the chaotic sea, and surprisingly robust signatures of classical phase space structures. Our data show differences between regular and chaotic dynamics in the sensitivity to perturbations of the quantum kicked top Hamiltonian and in the average electron-nuclear spin entanglement during the first 40 kicks. The difference, while clear, is modest due to the small size of the spin.