Spontaneous optomechanical pattern formation in cold atoms

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Transverse pattern formation in an optical cavity containing a cloud of cold two-level atoms is discussed. We show that density modulation becomes the dominant mechanism as the atomic temperature is reduced. Indeed, for low but easily achievable temperatures the internal degrees of freedom of the atoms can be neglected, and the system is well described by treating them as linear dielectric particles. A linear stability analysis predicts the instability threshold and the spatial scale of the emergent pattern. Numerical simulations in two transverse dimensions confirm the instability and predict the spontaneous formation of honeycomb and hexagonal density structures, respectively, for the blue and red detuned cases.

LanguageEnglish
Article number031801(R)
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review A
Volume86
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2012

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atoms
degrees of freedom
modulation
cavities
thresholds
temperature
simulation

Keywords

  • optical cavities
  • cold two-level atoms
  • stability analysis

Cite this

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title = "Spontaneous optomechanical pattern formation in cold atoms",
abstract = "Transverse pattern formation in an optical cavity containing a cloud of cold two-level atoms is discussed. We show that density modulation becomes the dominant mechanism as the atomic temperature is reduced. Indeed, for low but easily achievable temperatures the internal degrees of freedom of the atoms can be neglected, and the system is well described by treating them as linear dielectric particles. A linear stability analysis predicts the instability threshold and the spatial scale of the emergent pattern. Numerical simulations in two transverse dimensions confirm the instability and predict the spontaneous formation of honeycomb and hexagonal density structures, respectively, for the blue and red detuned cases.",
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Spontaneous optomechanical pattern formation in cold atoms. / Tesio, Enrico; Robb, Gordon; Ackemann, Thorsten; Firth, William; Oppo, Gian-Luca.

In: Physical Review A, Vol. 86, No. 3, 031801(R) , 10.09.2012.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Spontaneous optomechanical pattern formation in cold atoms

AU - Tesio, Enrico

AU - Robb, Gordon

AU - Ackemann, Thorsten

AU - Firth, William

AU - Oppo, Gian-Luca

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AB - Transverse pattern formation in an optical cavity containing a cloud of cold two-level atoms is discussed. We show that density modulation becomes the dominant mechanism as the atomic temperature is reduced. Indeed, for low but easily achievable temperatures the internal degrees of freedom of the atoms can be neglected, and the system is well described by treating them as linear dielectric particles. A linear stability analysis predicts the instability threshold and the spatial scale of the emergent pattern. Numerical simulations in two transverse dimensions confirm the instability and predict the spontaneous formation of honeycomb and hexagonal density structures, respectively, for the blue and red detuned cases.

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