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Stable single light bullets and vortices and their active control in cold Rydberg gases

Bai, Zhengyang; Li, Weibin; Huang, Guoxiang

Stable single light bullets and vortices and their active control in cold Rydberg gases Thumbnail


Zhengyang Bai

Associate Professor

Guoxiang Huang


Realizing single light bullets and vortices that are stable in high dimensions is a long-standing goal in the study of nonlinear optical physics. On the other hand, the storage and retrieval of such stable high dimensional optical pulses may offer a variety of applications. Here we present a scheme to generate such optical pulses in a cold Rydberg atomic gas. By virtue of electromagnetically induced transparency, strong, long-range atom-atom interaction in Rydberg states is mapped to light fields, resulting in a giant, fast-responding nonlocal Kerr nonlinearity and the formation of light bullets and vortices carrying orbital angular momenta, which have extremely low generation power, very slow propagation velocity, and can stably propagate, with the stability provided by the combination of local and the nonlocal Kerr nonlinearities. We demonstrate that the light bullets and vortices obtained can be stored and retrieved in the system with high efficiency and fidelity. Our study provides a new route for manipulating high-dimensional nonlinear optical processes via the controlled optical nonlinearities in cold Rydberg gases.


Bai, Z., Li, W., & Huang, G. (2019). Stable single light bullets and vortices and their active control in cold Rydberg gases. Optica, 6(3), 309-317.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jan 16, 2019
Online Publication Date Mar 7, 2019
Publication Date Mar 20, 2019
Deposit Date Feb 21, 2019
Publicly Available Date Mar 8, 2020
Journal Optica
Electronic ISSN 2334-2536
Publisher Optical Society of America
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 6
Issue 3
Pages 309-317
Keywords Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics; Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This article is maintained by: OSA - The Optical Society; Crossref DOI link to publisher maintained version:; Article type: research-article; Similarity check: Screened by Similarity Check; Peer reviewed: Yes; Review process: Single blind; Received: 15 November 2018; Accepted: 16 January 2019; Published: 7 March 2019; Copyright: Published by The Optical Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. Further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the published article’s title, journal citation, and DOI.


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