Ground-state coherence versus orientation: competing mechanisms for light-induced magnetic self-organization in cold atoms

G. Labeyrie, J. G.M. Walker, G. R.M. Robb, R. Kaiser, T. Ackemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
28 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

We investigate the interplay between two mechanisms for magnetic self-organization in a cloud of cold rubidium atoms subjected to a retroreflected laser beam. The transition between two different phases, one linked to a spontaneous spatial modulation of the Δm=2 ground-state coherence and the other to that of the magnetic orientation (spin), can be induced by tuning either a weak transverse magnetic field or the laser intensity. We observe both first- and second-order transitions depending on the presence of the magnetic field. The experimental observations are successfully compared to extended numerical simulations based on a spin-1 model.

Original languageEnglish
Article number023505
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review A
Volume105
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Feb 2022

Keywords

  • light-matter interaction
  • effects of atomic coherence on light propagation
  • nonlinear optics
  • atomic gases
  • magnetic moment
  • atom & ion cooling

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