Nuclear spin squeezing via electric quadrupole interaction
Control over nuclear-spin fluctuations is essential for processes that rely on preserving the quantum state of an embedded system. For this purpose, squeezing is a viable alternative, so far that has not been properly exploited for the nuclear spins. Of particular relevance in solids is the electric quadrupole interaction (QI), which operates on nuclei having spin higher than 1/2. In its general form, QI involves an electric-field gradient (EFG) biaxiality term. Here, we show that as this EFG biaxiality increases, it enables continuous tuning of single-particle squeezing from the one-axis twisting to the two-axis countertwisting limits. A detailed analysis of QI squeezing is provided, exhibiting the intricate consequences of EFG biaxiality. The initial states over the Bloch sphere are mapped out to identify those favorable for fast initial squeezing, or for prolonged squeezings. Furthermore, the evolution of squeezing in the presence of a phase-damping channel and an external magnetic field are investigated. We observe that dephasing drives toward an antisqueezed terminal state, the degree of which increases with the spin angular momentum. Finally, QI squeezing in the limiting case of a two-dimensional EFG with a perpendicular magnetic field is discussed, which is of importance for two-dimensional materials, and the associated beat patterns in squeezing are revealed. © 2016 American Physical Society.