Abstract:
We theoretically analyze the response properties of ultracold bosons in optical lattices to the static variation of the trapping potential. We show that, upon an increase of such potential (trap squeezing), the density variations in a central region, with linear size of >~ 10 wavelengths, reflect that of the bulk system upon changing the chemical potential: hence measuring the density variations gives direct access to the bulk compressibility. When combined with standard time-of-flight measurements, this approach has the potential of unambiguously detecting the appearence of the most fundamental phases realized by bosons in optical lattices, with or without further external potentials: superfluid, Mott insulator, band insulator and Bose glass.

Abstract:
We investigate numerically the zero-temperature physics of the one-dimensional Bose-Hubbard model in an incommensurate cosine potential, recently realized in experiments with cold bosons in optical superlattices L. Fallani et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 98, 130404, (2007)]. An incommensurate cosine potential has intermediate properties between a truly periodic and a fully random potential, displaying a characteristic length scale (the quasi-period) which is shown to set a finite lower bound to the excitation energy of the system at special incommensurate fillings. This leads to the emergence of gapped incommensurate band-insulator (IBI) phases along with gapless Bose-glass (BG) phases for strong quasi-periodic potential, both for hardcore and softcore bosons. Enriching the spatial features of the potential by the addition of a second incommensurate component appears to remove the IBI regions, stabilizing a continuous BG phase over an extended parameter range. Moreover we discuss the validity of the local-density approximation in presence of a parabolic trap, clarifying the notion of a local BG phase in a trapped system; we investigate the behavior of first- and second-order coherence upon increasing the strength of the quasi-periodic potential; and we discuss the ab-initio derivation of the Bose-Hubbard Hamiltonian with quasi-periodic potential starting from the microscopic Hamiltonian of bosons in an incommensurate superlattice.

Abstract:
In this paper we theoretically discuss how quantum simulators based on trapped cold bosons in optical lattices can explore the grand-canonical phase diagram of homogeneous lattice boson models, via control of the trapping potential independently of all other experimental parameters (trap squeezing). Based on quantum Monte Carlo, we establish the general scaling relation linking the global chemical potential to the Hamiltonian parameters of the Bose-Hubbard model in a parabolic trap, describing cold bosons in optical lattices; we find that this scaling relation is well captured by a modified Thomas-Fermi scaling behavior - corrected for quantum fluctuations - in the case of high enough density and/or weak enough interactions, and by a mean-field Gutzwiller Ansatz over a much larger parameter range. The above scaling relation allows to control experimentally the chemical potential, independently of all other Hamiltonian parameters, via trap squeezing; given that the global chemical potential coincides with the local chemical potential in the trap center, measurements of the central density as a function of the chemical potential gives access to the information on the bulk compressibility of the Bose-Hubbard model. Supplemented with time-of-flight measurements of the coherence properties, the measurement of compressibility enables one to discern among the various possible phases realized by bosons in an optical lattice with or without external (periodic or random) potentials -- e.g. superfluid, Mott insulator, band insulator, and Bose glass. We theoretically demonstrate the trap-squeezing investigation of the above phases in the case of bosons in a one-dimensional optical lattice, and in a one-dimensional incommensurate superlattice.

Abstract:
In the present paper we discuss the rich phase diagram of S=1/2 weakly coupled dimer systems with site dilution as a function of an applied uniform magnetic field. Performing quantum Monte Carlo simulations on a site-diluted bilayer system, we find a sequence of three distinct quantum-disordered phases induced by the field. Such phases divide a doping-induced order-by-disorder phase at low fields from a field-induced ordered phase at intermediate fields. The three quantum disordered phases are: a gapless disordered-free-moment phase, a gapped plateau phase, and two gapless Bose-glass phases. Each of the quantum-disordered phases have distinct experimental signatures that make them observable through magnetometry and neutron scattering measurements. In particular the Bose-glass phase is characterized by an unconventional magnetization curve whose field-dependence is exponential. Making use of a local-gap model, we directly relate this behavior to the statistics of rare events in the system.

Abstract:
Artificial gauge fields are a unique way of manipulating the motional state of cold atoms. Here we propose the use of artificial gauge fields -- obtained e.g. via lattice shaking -- to perform primary noise thermometry of cold atoms in optical lattices - not requiring any form of prior calibration. The proposed thermometric scheme relies on fundamental fluctuation-dissipation relations, connecting the global response to the variation of the applied gauge field and the fluctuation of quantities related to the momentum distribution (such as the average kinetic energy or the average current). We demonstrate gauge-field thermometry for several physical situations, including free fermions and strongly interacting bosons. The proposed approach is extremely robust to quantum fluctuations - even in the vicinity of a quantum phase transition - when it relies on the thermal fluctuations of an emerging classical field, associated with the onset of Bose condensation or chiral order.

Abstract:
We investigate the field-induced insulator-to-superfluid transition of bosonic quasiparticles in $S=1/2$ weakly-coupled dimer antiferromagnets. In presence of realistic disorder due to site dilution of the magnetic lattice, we show that the system displays an extended Bose-glass phase characterized by the localization of the hard-core quasiparticles.

Abstract:
The field-induced antiferromagnetic ordering in systems of weakly coupled S=1/2 dimers at zero temperature can be described as a Bose-Einstein condensation of triplet quasiparticles (singlet quasiholes) in the ground state. For the case of a Heisenberg bilayer, it is here shown how the above picture is altered in the presence of site dilution of the magnetic lattice. Geometric randomness leads to quantum localization of the quasiparticles/quasiholes and to an extended Bose-glass phase in a realistic disordered model. This localization phenomenon drives the system towards a quantum-disordered phase well before the classical geometric percolation threshold is reached.

Abstract:
We present a general scheme for the calculation of the Renyi entropy of a subsystem in quantum many-body models that can be efficiently simulated via quantum Monte Carlo. When the simulation is performed at very low temperature, the above approach delivers the entanglement Renyi entropy of the subsystem, and it allows to explore the crossover to the thermal Renyi entropy as the temperature is increased. We implement this scheme explicitly within the Stochastic Series expansion as well as within path-integral Monte Carlo, and apply it to quantum spin and quantum rotor models. In the case of quantum spins, we show that relevant models in two dimensions with reduced symmetry (XX model or hardcore bosons, transverse-field Ising model at the quantum critical point) exhibit an area law for the scaling of the entanglement entropy.

Abstract:
We review recent theoretical and experimental e?orts aimed at the investigation of the physics of interacting disordered bosons (so-called dirty bosons) in the context of quantum magnetism. The physics of dirty bosons is relevant to a wide variety of condensed matter systems, encompassing Helium in porous media, granular superconductors and ultracold atoms in disordered optical potentials, to cite a few. Nevertheless, the understanding of the transition from a localized, Bose-glass phase to an ordered, superfluid condensate phase still represents a fundamentally open problem. Still to be constructed is also a quantitative description of the highly inhomogeneous and strongly correlated phases connected by the transition. We discuss how disordered magnetic insulators in a strong magnetic field can provide a well controlled realization of the above transition. Combining numerical simulations with experiments on real materials can shed light on some fundamental properties of the critical behavior, such as the scaling of the critical temperature to condensation close to the quantum critical point.

Abstract:
We present a quantum Monte Carlo study of the one-body density matrix (OBDM) and the momentum distribution of one-dimensional dipolar bosons, with dipole moments polarized perpendicular to the direction of confinement. We observe that the long-range nature of the dipole interaction has dramatic effects on the off-diagonal correlations: although the dipoles never crystallize, the system goes from a quasi-condensate regime at low interactions to a regime in which quasi-condensation is discarded, in favor of quasi-solidity. For all strengths of the dipolar interaction, the OBDM shows an oscillatory behavior coexisting with an overall algebraic decay; and the momentum distribution shows sharp kinks at the wavevectors of the oscillations, $Q = \pm 2\pi n$ (where $n$ is the atom density), beyond which it is strongly suppressed. This \emph{momentum filtering} effect introduces a characteristic scale in the momentum distribution, which can be arbitrarily squeezed by lowering the atom density. This shows that one-dimensional dipolar Bose gases, realized e.g. by trapped dipolar molecules, show strong signatures of the dipolar interaction in time-of-flight measurements.