Engineered two-dimensional Ising interactions in a trapped-ion quantum simulator with hundreds of spins

  • Britton J
  • Sawyer B
  • Keith A
 et al. 
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The presence of long-range quantum spin correlations underlies a variety of physical phenomena in condensed matter systems, potentially including high-temperature superconductivity. However, many properties of exotic strongly correlated spin systems (e.g., spin liquids) have proved difficult to study, in part because calculations involving N-body entanglement become intractable for as few as N~30 particles. Feynman divined that a quantum simulator - a special-purpose "analog" processor built using quantum particles (qubits) - would be inherently adept at such problems. In the context of quantum magnetism, a number of experiments have demonstrated the feasibility of this approach. However, simulations of quantum magnetism allowing controlled, tunable interactions between spins localized on 2D and 3D lattices of more than a few 10's of qubits have yet to be demonstrated, owing in part to the technical challenge of realizing large-scale qubit arrays. Here we demonstrate a variable-range Ising-type spin-spin interaction J_ij on a naturally occurring 2D triangular crystal lattice of hundreds of spin-1/2 particles (9Be+ ions stored in a Penning trap), a computationally relevant scale more than an order of magnitude larger than existing experiments. We show that a spin-dependent optical dipole force can produce an antiferromagnetic interaction J_ij ~ 1/d_ij^a, where a is tunable over 0

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  • James FreericksGeorgetown University

  • Joseph W. Britton

  • Brian C. Sawyer

  • Adam C. Keith

  • C. C Joseph Wang

  • Hermann Uys

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