Accession Number:

ADA624971

Title:

Direct Observation of Zitterbewegung in a Bose Einstein Condensate

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:

MARYLAND UNIV COLLEGE PARK

Report Date:

2013-07-03

Pagination or Media Count:

14.0

Abstract:

Zitterbewegung, a force-free trembling motion first predicted for relativistic fermions like electrons, was an unexpected consequence of the Dirac equations unification of quantum mechanics and special relativity. Though the oscillatory motions large frequency and small amplitude have precluded its measurement with electrons, zitterbewegung is observable via quantum simulation. We engineered an environment for 87Rb Bose Einstein condensates where the constituent atoms behaved like relativistic particles subject to the one-dimensional Dirac equation. With direct imaging, we observed the sub-micrometre trembling motion of these clouds, demonstrating the utility of neutral ultracold quantum gases for simulating Dirac particles.

Subject Categories:

  • Nuclear Physics and Elementary Particle Physics
  • Quantum Theory and Relativity

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE