Bright matter-wave solitons formation dynamics and quantum reflection

Posted on 22nd August 2012
Contributors: Simon Lee Cornish, Simon Gardiner, Stephen Hopkins, Anna Marchant, Nick Parker, Ana Rakonjac, Oliver Wales, Christoph Weiss, Tim Wiles, Manfred Yu

For full details of this project click here.


Solitons are self-focusing wave packets that can propagate over long distances without change in shape, and emerge from collisions unaltered. Bose-Einstein condensates (BEC) can support either "bright" or "dark" soliton solutions, depending on whether the atomic interactions are attractive or repulsive, respectively. The goal of this project is to study the formation, dynamics and quantum reflection of bright matter-wave solitons using Rb-85 condensates. Such solitons form well localised, self-stable atomic wave packets which are ideal for probing the spatial variation of an unknown force. In the future, precision measurements of the interactions between an atom and a solid surface may set new limits on short range corrections to gravity due to exotic forces beyond the Standard model.



“Probing Non-Equilibrium Quantum Many-Body Dynamics with Bright Matter-Wave Solitons” EPSRC Grant EP/L010844/1

"Bright matter-wave solitons: formation, dynamics and quantum reflection" EPSRC Grant EP/F002068/1

"Quantum-Degenerate Gases for Precision Measurements (QuDeGPM)" part of a EuroQUASAR Collaborative Research Project (funded via EPSRC Grant EP/G026602/1)