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Purcell-enhanced dipolar interactions in nanostructures

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posted on 2023-01-12, 14:45 authored by Artur Skljarow, Harald Kübler, Charles S. Adams, Tilman Pfau, Robert Löw, Hadiseh Alaeian
Strong light-induced interactions between atoms are known to cause nonlinearities at a few-photon level which are crucial for applications in quantum information processing. Compared to free space, the scattering and the light-induced dipolar interaction of atoms can be enhanced by a dielectric environment. For this \emph{Purcell effect}, either a cavity or a waveguide can be used. Here, we combine the high densities achievable in thermal atomic vapors with an efficient coupling to a slot waveguide. In contrast to free-space interactions, atoms aligned within the slot exhibit repulsive interactions that are further enhanced by a factor of 8 due to the Purcell effect. The corresponding blueshift of the transition frequency of atoms arranged in the essentially one-dimensional geometry vanishes above the saturation, providing a controllable nonlinearity at the few-photon level. The experimental results are in good agreement with Monte-Carlo simulations that include the dielectric environment, dipolar interactions, and motional effects. The results pave the way towards a robust scalable platform for quantum nonlinear optics and all-optical quantum information processing at room temperature.

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