Superconductivity provides a canonical example of a quantum phase of matter. When superconducting islands are connected by Josephson junctions in a lattice, the low temperature state
of the system can map to the celebrated XY model and its associated universality classes. This has been used to experimentally implement realizations of Mott insulator and Berezinskii–Kosterlitz–Thouless (BKT) transitions to vortex dynamics analogous to those in type-II superconductors. When an external magnetic field is added, the effective spins of the XY model become frustrated, leading to the formation of topological defects (vortices). Here we observe the many-body dynamics of such an array, including frustration, via its coupling to a superconducting microwave cavity. We take the design of the transmon qubit, but replace the single junction between two antenna pads with the complete array. This allows us to probe the system at 10 mK with minimal self-heating by using weak coherent states at the single (microwave) photon level to probe the resonance frequency of the cavity. We observe signatures of ordered vortex lattice at rational flux fillings of the array.
Using the techniques of optomechanics, a high-Q mechanical oscillator may serve as a link between electromagnetic modes of vastly different frequencies. This approach has successfully
been exploited for the frequency conversion of classical signals and has the potential of performing quantum state transfer between superconducting circuitry and a traveling optical signal. Such transducers are often operated in a linear regime, where the hybrid system can be described using linear response theory based on the Heisenberg-Langevin equations. While mathematically straightforward to solve, this approach yields little intuition about the dynamics of the hybrid system to aid the optimization of the transducer. As an analysis and design tool for such electro-optomechanical transducers, we introduce an equivalent circuit formalism, where the entire transducer is represented by an electrical circuit. Thereby we integrate the transduction functionality of optomechanical (OM) systems into the toolbox of electrical engineering allowing the use of its well-established design techniques. This unifying impedance description can be applied both for static (DC) and harmonically varying (AC) drive fields, accommodates arbitrary linear circuits, and is not restricted to the resolved-sideband regime. Furthermore, by establishing the quantized input/output formalism for the equivalent circuit, we obtain the scattering matrix for linear transducers using circuit analysis, and thereby have a complete quantum mechanical characterization of the transducer. Hence, this mapping of the entire transducer to the language of electrical engineering both sheds light on how the transducer performs and can at the same time be used to optimize its performance by aiding the design of a suitable electrical circuit.
We demonstrate a scheme to engineer the three-body interaction in circuit-QED systems by tuning a fluxonium qubit. Connecting such qubits in a square lattice and controlling the tunneling
dynamics, in the form of a synthesized magnetic field, for the photon-like excitations of the system, allows the implementation of a parent Hamiltonian whose ground state is the Pfaffian wave function. Furthermore, we show that the addition of the next-nearest neighbor tunneling stabilizes the ground state, recovering the expected topological degeneracy even for small lattices. Finally, we discuss the implementation of these ideas with the current technology.