The non-Hermitian skin effect (NHSE), the accumulation of eigen-wave functions at boundaries of open systems, underlies a variety of exotic properties that defy conventional wisdom. While the NHSE and its intriguing impact on band topology and dynamics have been observed in classical or photonic systems, their demonstration in a quantum gas system remains elusive. Here we report the experimental realization of a dissipative Aharonov-Bohm chain - non-Hermitian topological model with NHSE - in the momentum space of a two-component Bose-Einstein condensate. We identify signatures of the NHSE in the condensate dynamics, and perform Bragg spectroscopy to resolve topological edge states against a background of localized bulk states. Our Letter sets the stage for further investigation on the interplay of many-body statistics and interactions with the NHSE, and is a significant step forward in the quantum control and simulation of non-Hermitian physics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)