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Priority Programme Giant Interactions in Rydberg Systems (SPP 1929)
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)
The Priority Programme wants to establish a crossdisciplinary research platform in Germany for the investigation and exploitation of the extraordinary interaction properties of quantum systems in highly excited Rydberg states. It addresses not only fundamental questions relying on Rydberg interactions in few and many-body systems, quantum nonlinear optics and surface science but also applications in various fields of classical and quantum technology as well as metrology.
Successful proposals will go beyond traditional Rydberg physics and address topics from the following four research areas:
- The research area "Rydberg quantum optics", which exploits the giant interaction between Rydberg atoms for strong photon-photon coupling to develop and explore key elements of quantum information technology such as few photon devices. One objective could be the theoretical modelling and experimental realisation of novel many-body photon states. The physical systems might include trapped, cold atomic gases and vapour cells but could also be extended to promising new technological platforms such as vapour-filled hollow core fibres or Rydberg excitons in semiconductors.
- The research area "Rydberg aggregates", in which new materials with Rydberg-like excitations such as carbon nanotubes and nano-structured arrays of nanotubes may be investigated. The focus should lie on the properties of novel liquid states of Rydberg matter, and on exotic Rydberg molecules.
- The research area "Rydberg interfaces", in which it is planned to couple Rydberg systems coherently to other physical systems in a controlled way. This might include light, opto-mechanical oscillators, trapped ions, surfaces and superconducting circuits.
- The research area "Rydberg many-body physics", in which the strength and the non-local character of resonant dipole-dipole interactions of Rydberg systems may be exploited to study many-body physics. Here, new quantum phases based on Rydberg dressing, such as the elusive super-solid, could be explored. Many-body Rydberg systems are furthermore an ideal platform for simulating quantum spin models or realising exotic magnetic phases. Rydberg gases offer also new experimental approaches to study immersed quantum systems such as neutral or charged impurities, or the formation of polarons in the strongly interacting regime. Novel many-body phenomena can arise in solid state systems due to the interplay between Coulomb and Rydberg interactions in semiconductor Rydberg excitons.

Proposals for this Priority Programme should not deal with more traditional fields of single atom Rydberg physics like, for example, spectroscopy in astrophysics, single electron wavepacket dynamics or single atom micromaser physics.

Universität Stuttgart
Fachbereich Physik
5. Physikalisches Institut
Pfaffenwaldring 57
70569 Stuttgart
Professor Dr. Tilman Pfau
Phone: +49 711 685-68025
E-Mail: t.pfau@physik.uni-stuttgart.de

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