Ultracold Nonreactive Molecules in an Optical Lattice: Connecting Chemistry to Many-Body Physics
Doçaj, Andris; Wall, Michael L.; Mukherjee, Rick; Hazzard, Kaden R.A.
We derive effective lattice models for ultracold bosonic or fermionic nonreactive molecules (NRMs) in an optical lattice, analogous to the Hubbard model that describes ultracold atoms in a lattice. In stark contrast to the Hubbard model, which is commonly assumed to accurately describe NRMs, we find that the single on-site interaction parameter U is replaced by a multichannel interaction, whose properties we elucidate. Because this arises from complex short-range collisional physics, it requires no dipolar interactions and thus occurs even in the absence of an electric field or for homonuclear molecules. We find a crossover between coherent few-channel models and fully incoherent single-channel models as the lattice depth is increased. We show that the effective model parameters can be determined in lattice modulation experiments, which, consequently, measure molecular collision dynamics with a vastly sharper energy resolution than experiments in a free-space ultracold gas.