Matter-wave interference versus spontaneous pattern formation in spinor Bose-Einstein condensates


We describe effects of matter-wave interference of spinor states in the Rb-87 Bose-Einstein condensate. The components of the F = 2 manifold are populated by forced Majorana transitions and then fall freely due to gravity in an applied magnetic field. Weak inhomogeneities of the magnetic field, present in the experiment, impose relative velocities onto different m(F) components, which show up as interference patterns upon measurement of atomic density distributions with a Stern-Gerlach imaging method. We show that interference effects may appear in experiments even if gradients of the magnetic field components are eliminated but higher-order inhomogeneity is present and the duration of the interaction is long enough. In particular, we show that the resulting matter-wave interference patterns can mimic spontaneous pattern formation in the quantum gas.

Autorzy / Authors: 
M. Witkowski, R. Gartman, B. Nagórny, M. Piotrowski, M. Płodzień, K. Sacha, J. Szczepkowski, J. Zachorowski, M. Zawada, and W. Gawlik
Phys. Rev. A 88, 025602
Tematyka badań: 
Zimne atomy