Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Chandra Raman's talk

Yesterday we had a talk by Chandra Raman, from Georgia Tech. He showed pictures of vortex lattices in a Bose-Einstein condensate, which he created by stirring the BEC, for example via a laser.

He also discussed their use of Bragg scattering to characterize the condensate, and also how they plugged the trap for Na BECs to counteract Majorana transitions.

Sadly, this was the last talk and lunch of the academic year...and I think it's also my last blog posting for a while, as my hit counter says that this blog has had zero hits thus far, except for a few hits coming from Harvard (i.e., me). :)

I suppose I could discuss Britney Spears in order to stimulate some discussion. :) But that's OK.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


Here is a link to the Sarong Theorem Archive, a collection of pictures of people wearing sarongs while proving theorems. You too can be immortalized; just send them your picture while proving a theorem, and wearing a sarong.

More Jobs

I just came across another list of jobs available in quantum control/quantum information and related fields.

In the Harvard advertisement, many of the professors listed work at the interface of AMO and condensed matter, which seems to be a very promising field: one reason people are so interested in optical lattices is their potential for exploring phenomena in condensed matter.

Charlie Marcus' group, and in particular Jason Petta, whom I don't know personally, has recently done some incredible experimental work on manipulating electron spins in double quantum dots--worth a look!

Preprint of the day--Quantum chemistry meets quantum computing

Here is the preprint which I would like to highlight today, by Alán Aspuru-Guzik, Anthony Dutoi, Peter Love, and Martin Head-Gordon.

Alán Aspuru-Guzik is coming to Harvard in July, which I think will make him the first real electronic structure theorist here. Electronic structure has been a very hot, and useful, field for a very long time, and I have always been surprised that Harvard did not have anyone in the chemistry department working on it.

The theme of recent research by Alán and some others in the Head-Gordon group has been to use classical computers to simulate quantum computers, and show that quantum computational algorithms can be useful and accurate for determining ground-state energies of small molecules. For example, they have simulated calculations of the ground state energies of both water and lithium hydride. It seems that only a few hundred qubits can give extremely accurate results. Another use for quantum computing!

Now if we AMO people could just get the quantum computer running... :)