Polariton condensation into vortex states in the synthetic magnetic field of a strained honeycomb lattice

Year: 2022

Authors: Lledo C., Carusotto I., Szymanska M.H.

Autors Affiliation: Department of Physics and Astronomy, University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT, United Kingdom; Institut quantique & Dypartement de Physique, University de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Quebec J1K 2R1, Canada; INO-CNR BEC Center and Dipartimento di Fisica, Universita di Trento, I-38123 Povo, Italy

Abstract: Photonic materials are a rapidly growing platform for studying condensed matter physics with light, where the exquisite control capability is allowing us to learn about the relation between microscopic dynamics and macroscopic properties. One of the most interesting aspects of condensed matter is the interplay between interactions and the effect of an external magnetic field or rotation, responsible for a plethora of rich phenomena-Hall physics and quantized vortex arrays. At first sight, however, these effects for photons seem vetoed: they do not interact with each other and they are immune to magnetic fields and rotations. Yet in specially devised structures these effects can be engineered. Here, we propose the use of a synthetic magnetic field induced by strain in a honeycomb lattice of resonators to create a non-equilibrium Bose-Einstein condensate of light-matter particles (polaritons) in a rotating state, without the actual need for external rotation nor reciprocity-breaking elements. We show that thanks to the competition between interactions, dissipation and a suitably designed incoherent pump, the condensate spontaneously becomes chiral by selecting a single Dirac valley of the honeycomb lattice, occupying the lowest Landau level and forming a vortex array. Our results offer a new platform where to study the exciting physics of arrays of quantized vortices with light and pave the way to explore the transition from a vortex-dominated phase to the photonic analogue of the fractional quantum Hall regime.


Volume: 12 (2)      Pages from: 068-1  to: 068-17

More Information: We thank A. Amo, J. Bloch, O. Jamadi, and S. Ravets for helpful discussions, and C. Mc Keever for comments on the manuscript. C.L. gratefully acknowledges the financial support of ANID through Becas Chile 2017, Contract No. 72180352. IC acknowledges support from the European Union Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 820392 (PhoQuS) and from the Provincia Autonoma di Trento. M.H.S. gratefully acknowledges financial support from the Quantera ERA-NET cofund project InterPol (through the EPSRC Grant No. EP/R04399X/1) and EPSRC Grant No. EP/S019669/1.
DOI: 10.21468/SCIPOSTPHYS.12.2.068