Microwave dressing of Rydberg dark states

M Tanasittikosol, J D Pritchard, D Maxwell, A Gauguet, K J Weatherill, R M Potvliege, C S Adams

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We study electromagnetically induced transparency (EIT) in the 5s→5p→46s ladder system of a cold 87Rb gas. We show that the resonant microwave coupling between the 46s and 45p states leads to an Autler-Townes splitting of the EIT resonance. This splitting can be employed to vary the group index by 105 allowing independent control of the propagation of dark state polaritons. We also demonstrate that microwave dressing leads to enhanced interaction effects. In particular, we present evidence for a 1/R3 energy shift between Rydberg states resonantly coupled by the microwave field and the ensuing breakdown of the pairwise interaction approximation.
Original languageEnglish
Article number184020
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sep 2011


  • Autler-Townes
  • dark state
  • dark-state polaritons
  • electromagnetically induced transparency
  • energy shift
  • group index
  • independent control
  • interaction effect
  • ladder system
  • microwave field
  • pairwise interaction
  • resonant microwave
  • Rydberg
  • diagnostic radiography
  • quantum optics
  • rubidium
  • microwaves

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