Abstract:
We consider a mixture of two bosonic species with tunable interspecies interaction in a periodic potential and discuss the advantages of low filling factors on the detection of the pair-superfluid phase. We show how the emergence of such a phase can be put dramatically into evidence by looking at the interference pictures and density correlations after expansion and by changing the interspecies interaction from attractive to repulsive.

Abstract:
We present a concise review of the physics of ultra-cold dipolar gases, based mainly on the theoretical developments in our own group. First, we discuss shortly weakly interacting ultra-cold trapped dipolar gases. Dipolar Bose-Einstein condensates exhibit non-standard instabilities and the physics of both Bose and Fermi dipolar gases depends on the trap geometry. We focus then the second part of the paper on strongly correlated dipolar gases and discuss ultra-cold dipolar gases in optical lattices. Such gases exhibit a spectacular richness of quantum phases and metastable states, which may perhaps be used as quantum memories. We comment shortly on the possibility of superchemistry aiming at the creation of dipolar heteronuclear molecules in lattices. Finally, we turn to ultra-cold dipolar gases in artificial magnetic fields, and consider rotating dipolar gases, that provide in our opinion the best option towards the realization of the fractional quantum Hall effect and quantum Wigner crystals.

Abstract:
We calculate the single-particle spectral function for the one-band Bose-Hubbard model within the random phase approximation (RPA). In the strongly correlated superfluid, in addition to the gapless phonon excitations, we find extra gapped modes which become particularly relevant near the superfluid-Mott quantum phase transition (QPT). The strength in one of the gapped modes, a precursor of the Mott phase, grows as the QPT is approached and evolves into a hole (particle) excitation in the Mott insulator depending on whether the chemical potential is above (below) the tip of the lobe. The sound velocity of the Goldstone modes remains finite when the transition is approached at a constant density, otherwise, it vanishes at the transition. It agrees well with Bogoliubov theory except close to the transition. We also calculate the spatial correlations for bosons in an inhomogeneous trapping potential creating alternating shells of Mott insulator and superfluid. Finally, we discuss the capability of the RPA approximation to correctly account for quantum fluctuations in the vicinity of the QPT.

Abstract:
Starting from the hydrodynamic equations of superfluids, we calculate the frequencies of the collective oscillations of a harmonically trapped Bose gas for various 1D configurations. These include the mean field regime described by Gross-Pitaevskii theory and the beyond mean field regime at small densities described by Lieb-Liniger theory. The relevant combinations of the physical parameters governing the transition between the different regimes are discussed.

Abstract:
We investigate theoretically light scattering of photons by ultracold atoms in an optical lattice in the linear regime. A full quantum theory for the atom-photon interactions is developed as a function of the atomic state in the lattice along the Mott-insulator -- superfluid phase transition, and the photonic scattering cross section is evaluated as a function of the energy and of the direction of emission. The predictions of this theory are compared with the theoretical results of a recent work on Bragg scattering in time-of-flight measurements [A.M. Rey, {\it et al.}, Phys. Rev. A {\bf 72}, 023407 (2005)]. We show that, when performing Bragg spectroscopy with light scattering, the photon recoil gives rise to an additional atomic site to site hopping, which can interfere with ordinary tunneling of matter waves and can significantly affect the photonic scattering cross section.

Abstract:
We study the effect of the transverse degrees of freedom on the velocity of sound in a Bose-Einstein condensate immersed in a one-dimensional optical lattice and radially confined by a harmonic trap. We compare the results of full three-dimensional calculations with those of an effective 1D model based on the equation of state of the condensate. The perfect agreement between the two approaches is demonstrated for several optical lattice depths and throughout the full crossover from the 1D mean-field to the Thomas Fermi regime in the radial direction.

Abstract:
According to the Landau criterion for superfluidity, a Bose-Einstein condensate flowing with a group velocity smaller than the sound velocity is energetically stable to the presence of perturbing potentials. We found that this is strictly correct only for vanishingly small perturbations. The superfluid critical velocity strongly depends on the strength and shape of the defect. We quantitatively study, both numerically and with an approximate analytical model, the dynamical response of a one-dimensional condensate flowing against an istantaneously raised spatially periodic defect. We found that the critical velocity $v_c$ decreases by incresing the strength of the defect $V_0$, up to to a critical value of the defect intensity where the critical velocity vanishes.

Abstract:
We study the two-body bound and scattering states of two particles in a one dimensional optical lattice in the presence of a coherent coupling between two internal atomic levels. Due to the interplay between periodic potential, interactions and coherent coupling, the internal structure of the bound states depends on their center of mass momentum. This phenomenon corresponds to an effective momentum-dependent magnetic field for the dimer pseudo-spin, which could be observed in a chirping of the precession frequency during Bloch oscillations. The essence of this effect can be easily interpreted in terms of an effective bound state Hamiltonian. Moreover for indistinguishable bosons, the two-body eigenstates can present simultaneously attractive and repulsive bound-state nature or even bound and scattering properties.

Abstract:
We show that fermionic atoms have crucial advantages over bosonic atoms in terms of loading in optical lattices for use as a possible quantum computation device. After analyzing the change in the level structure of a non-uniform confining potential as a periodic potential is superimposed to it, we show how this structure combined with the Pauli principle and fermion degeneracy can be exploited to create unit occupancy of the lattice sites with very high efficiency.

Abstract:
We discuss the properties of the effective dipolar interaction for two particles tightly confined along a one-dimensional tube, stressing the emergence of a single dipolar-induced resonance in a regime for which two classical dipoles would just repel each other. We present a toy-model potential reproducing the main features of the effective interaction: a non-zero-range repulsive potential competing with an attractive contact term. The existence of a single resonance is confirmed analytically. The toy model is than generalized to investigate the interplay between dipolar and contact interaction, giving an intuitive interpretation of the resonance mechanism.