Supersolidity in the ultracold: when atoms behave as crystal and superfluid at the same time
Exotic and counterintuitive phases of quantum matter have been recently discovered in degenerate quantum gases of highly magnetic atoms (Erbium and Dysprosium). The very fact such atoms possess a large magnetic moment means that their interactions at the many-body level and their quantum correlations acquire a unique long-range and anisotropic character. This property opens novel avenues of investigation beyond the contact-interaction paradigm.
In our laboratories, dipolar Bose-Einstein condensates and Fermi gases of either Erbium or Dysprosium, or with dipolar quantum mixtures of both elements are routinely produced. This talk will review the recent developments in atomic dipolar quantum gases from the Innsbruck perspective with particular emphasis to our recent observations of the elusive and paradoxical supersolid state of matter, using both Er and Dy ultracold gases. Such paradoxical phase, in which crystal rigidity and superfluid flow coexist, has intrigued scientists across different disciplines for decades. Yet, the properties of dipolar supersolid are still frontier topics about which many questions remain to be answered from either an experimental or theoretical perspective.