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Observing a topological transition in weak-measurement-induced geometric phases

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Article number023179
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>3/06/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>Physical Review Research
Issue number2
Number of pages7
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Measurement plays a quintessential role in the control of quantum systems. Beyond initialization and readout which pertain to projective measurements, weak measurements, in particular through their back action on the system, may enable various levels of coherent control. The latter ranges from observing quantum trajectories to state dragging and steering. Furthermore, just like the adiabatic evolution of quantum states that is known to induce the Berry phase, sequential weak measurements may lead to path-dependent geometric phases. Here we measure the geometric phases induced by sequences of weak measurements and demonstrate a topological transition in the geometric phase controlled by measurement strength. This connection between weak measurement-induced quantum dynamics and topological transitions reveals subtle topological features in measurement-based manipulation of quantum systems. Our protocol could be implemented for classes of operations (e.g., braiding) that are topological in nature. Furthermore, our results open new horizons for measurement-enabled quantum control of many-body topological states.