Polarization dynamics in a photon Bose-Einstein condensate

Ryan I. Moodie, Peter Kirton, Jonathan Keeling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
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It has previously been shown that a dye-filled microcavity can produce a Bose-Einstein condensate of photons. Thermalization of photons is possible via repeated absorption and reemission by the dye molecules. In this paper, we theoretically explore the behavior of the polarization of light in this system. We find that, in contrast to the near complete thermalization between different spatial modes of light, thermalization of polarization states is expected to generally be incomplete. We show that the polarization degree changes significantly from below to above threshold, and explain the dependence of polarization on all relevant material parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Article number043844
Number of pages9
JournalPhysical Review A
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 17 Oct 2017


  • Bose-Einstein condensate
  • absorption
  • reemission
  • light polarization


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