The prospect of controllable exchange-antisymmetric interactions in atomic fermionic systems could enable new kinds of quantum simulation, topological quantum gates, and exotic few-body states. While p-wave interactions, which are exchange-antisymmetric, may be enhanced via Feshbach resonances, their utilization has been traditionally been limited by three-body loss. In this talk, I will discuss a recent experiment where we create isolated pairs of spin-polarized fermionic atoms in a three-dimensional optical lattice. In this regime, three-body loss is dramatically reduced, and we can tune and measure the elastic p-wave interaction energy of atom pairs, which can exhibit lifetimes exceeding up to fifty times larger than in free space. This enhanced lifetime allows tuning of the p-wave interaction to the unitary regime. Critically, these on-site interactions may be expressed by a universal single-parameter curve and can be generalized to other cold atoms systems. All experimental results are compared to analytic solutions for two harmonically trapped atoms interacting via a p-wave pseudo potential as well as an ab-initio interaction potential. This result is an important step towards utilizing p-wave interactions in cold atom lattice systems.
Host: Joseph Thywissen