Exact study of the one-dimensional boson Hubbard model with a superlattice potential

V. G. Rousseau, D. P. Arovas, M. Rigol, F. Hébert, G. G. Batrouni, R. T. Scalettar

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77 Scopus citations


We use quantum Monte Carlo simulations and exact diagonalization to explore the phase diagram of the Bose-Hubbard model with an additional superlattice potential. We first analyze the properties of superfluid and insulating phases present in the hard-core limit where an exact analytic treatment is possible via the Jordan-Wigner transformation. The extension to finite on-site interactions is achieved by means of quantum Monte Carlo simulations. We determine insulator and superfluid phase diagrams as functions of the on-site repulsive interaction, superlattice potential strength, and filling, finding that insulators with fractional occupation numbers, which are present in the hard-core case, extend deep into the soft-core region. Furthermore, at integer fillings, we find that the competition between the on-site repulsion and the superlattice potential can produce a phase transition between a Mott insulator and a charge-density-wave insulator, with an intermediate superfluid phase. Our results are relevant to the behavior of ultracold atoms in optical superlattices which are beginning to be studied experimentally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number174516
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number17
StatePublished - 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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