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  1. We demonstrate a method to obtain homogeneous atom-cavity coupling by selecting and keeping 87Rb atoms that are near maximally coupled to the cavity's standing-wave mode. We select atoms by imposing an AC Stark shift on the ground state hyperfine microwave transition frequency with light injected into the cavity. We then induce a spin flip with microwaves that are resonant for atoms that are near maximally coupled to the cavity mode of interest, after which, we use radiation pressure forces to remove from the cavity all the atoms in the initial spin state. Achieving greater homogeneity in the atom-cavity coupling will potentially enhance entanglement generation, intracavity driving of atomic transitions, cavity-optomechanics, and quantum simulations. This approach can easily be extended to other atomic species with microwave or optical transitions. 
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  2. Cavity QED experiments are natural hosts for non-equilibrium phases of matter supported by photon-mediated interactions. In this work, we consider a cavity QED simulation of the BCS model of superfluidity, by studying regimes where the cavity photons act as dynamical degrees of freedom instead of mere mediators of the interaction via virtual processes. We find an enhancement of long time coherence following a quench whenever the cavity frequency is tuned into resonance with the atoms. We discuss how this is equivalent to enhancement of non-equilibrium superfluidity and highlight similarities to an analogous phenomena recently studied in solid state quantum optics. We also discuss the conditions for observing this enhanced resonant pairing in experiments by including the effect of photon losses and inhomogeneous coupling in our analysis. 
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  3. We propose to simulate bosonic pair creation using large arrays of long-lived dipoles with multilevel internal structure coupled to an undriven optical cavity. Entanglement between the atoms, generated by the exchange of virtual photons through a common cavity mode, grows exponentially fast and is described by two-mode squeezing (TMS) of effective bosonic quadratures. The mapping between an effective bosonic model and the natural spin description of the dipoles allows us to realize the analog of optical homodyne measurements via straightforward global rotations and population measurements of the electronic states, and we propose to exploit this for quantum-enhanced sensing of an optical phase (common and differential between two ensembles). We discuss a specific implementation based on Sr atoms and show that our sensing protocol is robust to sources of decoherence intrinsic to cavity platforms. Our proposal can open unique opportunities for the observation of continuous variable entanglement in atomic systems and associated applications in next-generation optical atomic clocks. 
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