Realizing and Probing Baryonic Excitations in Rydberg Atom Arrays

TitleRealizing and Probing Baryonic Excitations in Rydberg Atom Arrays
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsLiu, F, Whitsitt, S, Bienias, P, Lundgren, R, Gorshkov, AV
Date Published7/14/2020

We propose a realization of mesonic and baryonic quasiparticle excitations in Rydberg atom arrays with programmable interactions. Recent experiments have shown that such systems possess a Z3-ordered crystalline phase whose low-energy quasiparticles are defects in the crystalline order. By engineering a Z3-translational-symmetry breaking field on top of the Rydberg-blockaded Hamiltonian, we show that different types of defects experience confinement, and as a consequence form mesonic or baryonic quasiparticle excitations. We illustrate the formation of these quasiparticles by studying a quantum chiral clock model related to the Rydberg Hamiltonian. We then propose an experimental protocol involving out-of-equilibrium dynamics to directly probe the spectrum of the confined excitations. We show that the confined quasiparticle spectrum can limit quantum information spreading in this system. This proposal is readily applicable to current Rydberg experiments, and the method can be easily generalized to more complex confined excitations (e.g. `tetraquarks', `pentaquarks') in phases with Zq order for q>3.