Atomic and Optical Physics: Ultracold Atoms and Many-body Physics

Learn about ultracold atoms and Bose-Einstein Condensate and applications to solid-state physics and quantum information science.
Atomic and Optical Physics: Ultracold Atoms and Many-body Physics
This course is archived
Estimated 4 weeks
10–12 hours per week
Instructor-paced
Instructor-led on a course schedule

About this course

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In this physics course you will learn about ultracold bosons and fermions, and you will hear from Prof. Ketterle about Bose-Einstein condensation (BEC). Prof. Ketterle was among the first to achive BEC in the lab and was awarded the Nobel prize in 2001 for his work along with Eric Cornell and Carl Wieman. You will also learn about weakly interacting Bose gases, as well as superfluid to Mott insulator transition, BEC-BCS crossover, trapped ions and quantum gates with ions.

This course is a part of a series of courses to introduce concepts and current frontiers of atomic physics, and to prepare you for cutting-edge research:

At MIT, the content of the five courses makes the second of a two-semester sequence (8.421 and 8.422) for graduate students interested in Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics. This sequence is required for Ph.D. students doing research in this field.

Completing the series allows you to pursue advanced study and research in cold atoms, as well as specialized topics in condensed matter physics. In these five courses you will learn about the following topics:

  • quantum states and dynamics of photons
  • photon-atom interactions: basics and semiclassical approximations
  • open system dynamics
  • optical Bloch equations
  • applications and limits of the optical Bloch equations
  • dressed atoms
  • light force
  • laser cooling
  • cold atoms
  • evaporative cooling
  • Bose-Einstein condensation
  • quantum algorithms and protocols
  • ion traps and magnetic traps.

At a glance

  • Institution: MITx
  • Subject: Physics
  • Level: Advanced
  • Prerequisites:
    A two-semester sequence in Quantum Mechanics at the level of MIT 8.05 and 8.06.
  • Language: English

What you'll learn

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  • Ultracold bosons and fermions
  • Bose-Einstein condensation
  • Weakly interacting Bose gases
  • Superfluid to Mott insulator transition
  • BEC-BCS crossover
  • Trapped ions
  • Quantum gates with ions

About the instructors