Last year marked the 20th birthday of a remarkable paper that has changed the entire field of quantum physics. Experimental physicist Immanuel Bloch describes the significance of this paper by Dieter Jaksch, Christoph Bruder, Ignacio Cirac, Crispin Gardiner, and Peter Zoller in a recent review in Nature Physics.

The proposal by Dieter Jaksch and colleagues for observing a quantum phase transition from a superfluid to a Mott insulator has shaped the research in the new field of quantum science of a whole generation of physicists and has by now been implemented in different forms in a variety of quantum systems, from ultracold atoms to superconducting qubit arrays and photonic platforms.

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