Time reversal in a macroscopic system is contradicting daily experience. It is practically impossible to restore a shattered cup to its original state by just time reversing the microscopic dynamics that led to its breakage. Yet, with the precise control capabilities provided by modern quantum technology, the unitary evolution of a quantum system can be reversed in time. Here, we implement a time-reversal protocol in a dipolar interacting, isolated many-body spin system represented by Rydberg states in an atomic gas. By changing the states encoding the spin, we flip the sign of the interaction Hamiltonian, and demonstrate the reversal of the relaxation dynamics of the magnetization by letting a demagnetized many-body state evolve back-in-time into a magnetized state. We elucidate the role of atomic motion using the concept of a Loschmidt echo. Finally, by combining the approach with Floquet engineering, we demonstrate time reversal for a large family of spin models with different symmetries. Our method of state transfer is applicable across a wide range of quantum simulation platforms and has applications far beyond quantum many-body physics, reaching from quantum-enhanced sensing to quantum information scrambling.

S. Geier, A. Braemer, E. Braun, M. Müllenbach, T. Franz, M. Gärttner, G. Zürn, M. Weidemüller,
„Time-reversal in a dipolar quantum many-body spin system“, 21. Feb. 2024, arXiv:2402.13873 (2024).


Related to Project A05