Real-space collapse of a polariton condensate

L. Dominici, M. Petrov, M. Matuszewski, D. Ballarini, M. De Giorgi, D. Colas, E. Cancellieri, B. Silva Fernández, A. Bramati, G. Gigli, A. Kavokin, F. Laussy, D. Sanvitto

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37 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Microcavity polaritons are two-dimensional bosonic fluids with strong nonlinearities, composed of coupled photonic and electronic excitations. In their condensed form, they display quantum hydrodynamic features similar to atomic Bose–Einstein condensates, such as long-range coherence, superfluidity and quantized vorticity. Here we report the unique phenomenology that is observed when a pulse of light impacts the polariton vacuum: the fluid which is suddenly created does not splash but instead coheres into a very bright spot. The real-space collapse into a sharp peak is at odd with the repulsive interactions of polaritons and their positive mass, suggesting that an unconventional mechanism is at play. Our modelling devises a possible explanation in the self-trapping due to a local heating of the crystal lattice, that can be described as a collective polaron formed by a polariton condensate. These observations hint at the polariton fluid dynamics in conditions of extreme intensities and ultrafast times.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8993
JournalNature Communications
Volume6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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Dominici, L., Petrov, M., Matuszewski, M., Ballarini, D., De Giorgi, M., Colas, D., ... Sanvitto, D. (2015). Real-space collapse of a polariton condensate. Nature Communications, 6, 8993. https://doi.org/10.1038/ncomms9993