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Motivated by recent experiments on toroidal Bose-Einstein condensates in all-optical traps with tunable weak links, we study the one-dimensional Bose-Hubbard model on a ring-shaped lattice with a small region of weak hopping integrals using quantum Monte Carlo simulations. Besides the usual Mott insulating and superfluid phases, we find a phase which is compressible but nonsuperfluid with a local Mott region. This "local Mott" phase extends in a large region of the phase diagram. These results suggest that the insulating and conducting phases can be tuned by a local parameter, which may provide additional insight into the design of atomtronic devices. © 2013 American Physical Society.

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Physical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics