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Nonequilibrium Materials Engineering

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The interaction of light and matter is at the heart of spectroscopies in condensed matter. With the development of ultra-short and ultra-strong laser pulses for pump-probe experiments, light is transforming from a tool to probe towards a tool to control and manipulate quantum many-body systems while driving them far away from their thermal equilibrium. In my presentation, I will discuss our recent theoretical and computational progress towards a microscopic understanding of light-driven solids with the long-term vision of nonequilibrium materials engineering. First I will present a study on ultrafast optical control of chiral Majorana modes in topological superconductors [1], in which we present a pump pulse protocol allows for optical switching of an order parameter purely on symmetry grounds, which implies that it works both in the high- frequency („Floquet“) and low-frequency limits. Then I will show results for a cavity quantum- electrodynamical modification of electron-phonon coupling and superconductivity in monolayer FeSe/SrTiO [2], in which the pure vacuum fluctuations of a confined photon field are used to engineer materials properties.

[1] M. Claassen, D. M. Kennes, M. Zingl, M. A. Sentef, A. Rubio, arXiv:1810.06536, Nature Physics (2019) https://www.nature.com/articles/s41567-019-0540-6

[2] M. A. Sentef, M. Ruggenthaler, A. Rubio, Science Advances 4, eaau6969 (2018)

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