School Seminar Program

Exactly Solvable Models in Ultracold Physics

Angela Foerster

Professor Angela Foerster
Department of Theoretical Physics

The study of exact solutions of quantum mechanical models has its origins in the work of Bethe in 1931 on the Heisenberg model. The field received a great impulse in the 1960s and 1970s with the work of Baxter, Lieb and Yang, among others, having prospered ever since. A significant aspect of exactly solvable models is that they can be found in different areas of physics, such as statistical mechanics, quantum field theory, condensed matter, string theory and more recently in cold atoms.

The impressive development in cooling and trapping atoms in one-dimensional tubes brought this discipline to a new audience, when it became clear that exactly solvable models can be realized in the lab. Prominent examples include the Lieb-Liniger model for spinless bosons and the Gaudin-Yang model for two-component fermions.

In this talk I will give an overview of these ongoing developments, with particular emphasis on the one-dimensional attractive Fermi gas with spin imbalance, for which some recent results will also be presented. This model exhibits a number of distinct quantum phases and provides an ideal testbed for exploring the physics of quantum phase transitions. In addition, other exactly solvable models relevant in this ultracold scenario will be discussed.

Angela Foerster obtained her master in physics from Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Brazil and PhD from the Free University Berlin, Germany in 1993. Since 1994 she has been employed as associate Professor in the Physics Institute at UFRGS. She has worked on mathematical physics and exactly solvable models applied to different areas. Her research interests include: exactly solvable models in cold atoms, strongly correlated electron systems, spin chains, spin ladder compounds, quantum criticality and quantum correlation functions. Since 2004 she has been Head of the Group of Mathematical Physics at UFRGS. She is currently a visiting fellow at the Dept. of Theoretical Physics, RSPE, ANU.

Refreshments will be held in the Le Couteur Link Building after the Seminar at 5:00pm

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