What is it about?
Polariton fluids made of coupled photonic and electronic oscillations have a polarization degree of freedom which can sustain both integer and half-integer quantized vortices. The photonic outcoupling makes possible to track their wavefunction, mapping both the density and phase in time by use of resonant ultrafast imaging.
Why is it important?
Here we could for the first time directly set a polariton condensate carrying either a full or half vortex as initial condition to see their dynamical behavior. We show for the first time the spiraling of an half-vortex, and the branching of FV and HV as vortex lines in a 2D+t domain. We illustrate how the out-of-equilibrium nature of the polariton fluid results in that the vortex trajectories are not driven by intrinsic thermodynamic energy considerations, rather by a kinetic interplay of factors such as the nonlinearity and the disorder background with its associated polarization splitting.
Read the Original
This page is a summary of: Vortex and half-vortex dynamics in a nonlinear spinor quantum fluid, Science Advances, December 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500807.
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Quantum vortex dynamics
The movies show the dynamics of the fluid density and phase, plus the 2D+t vortex lines of the main and secondary phase singularities. Both the half-vortex and full-vortex cases are reported, at different regimes. For a full description see the Sci Advances paper, http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/suppl/2015/12/01/1.11.e1500807.DC1
Polariton quantum vortex, ultraslow animation
The movie highlights an experimental polariton vortex coherently excited by a picosecond laser vorticant pulse as the initial condition of the planar polariton fluid and then left free to evolve. The ultrafast imaging corresponds to 1 ps / 1 s, which is a slowing down of 1.000.000.000.000 times of the polariton dynamics. The rotation at the optical frequency (in the order of the fs period) has been slowed further down by an additional ratio of several hundreds just to let the rotation be represented together with the vortex evolution in the order of the 10 ps lifetime of polaritons.
Description of the experimental research on polariton fluids at the CNR NANOTEC.
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