Fermionization of two distinguishable fermions

Phys Rev Lett. 2012 Feb 17;108(7):075303. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.108.075303. Epub 2012 Feb 16.


We study a system of two distinguishable fermions in a 1D harmonic potential. This system has the exceptional property that there is an analytic solution for arbitrary values of the interparticle interaction. We tune the interaction strength and compare the measured properties of the system to the theoretical prediction. For diverging interaction strength, the energy and square modulus of the wave function for two distinguishable particles are the same as for a system of two noninteracting identical fermions. This is referred to as fermionization. We have observed this phenomenon by directly comparing two distinguishable fermions with diverging interaction strength with two identical fermions in the same potential. We observe good agreement between experiment and theory. By adding more particles our system can be used as a quantum simulator for more complex systems where no theoretical solution is available.