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Light propagation in dense and chiral media


Fleischhaker,  Robert
Division Prof. Dr. Christoph H. Keitel, MPI for Nuclear Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Fleischhaker, R. (2009). Light propagation in dense and chiral media. PhD Thesis, Ruprecht-Karls Universität, Heidelberg.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0011-7405-4
In quantum optics, the electromagnetic character of light is mostly reduced to its electric component. Technologically interesting, a medium interacting with both the electric and magnetic component has recently been proposed. But the suggested combination of high density and induced chirality to enhance the magnetic response is beyond the limits of current experiments. This thesis studies light propagation in dense and chiral media, assessing both concepts separately and in more accessible parameter ranges. In this context, we analyze a so-called closed-loop system, demonstrate a scheme for group velocity control in the UV range, show how to utilize parametric processes for light propagation, and explain effects due to high density on a slow light pulse. We derive the wave equation for media with induced chirality and solve it on the level of general medium response coefficients. This is then followed by a specific example, in which the developed concepts are applied to study light propagation with chiral interactions. We find that a chiral medium is an ideal implementation of a closed-loop-phase control scheme and show that the dynamics of a slow light pulse can be controlled throughout propagation time. Furthermore, our results demonstrate that the magnetic probe field component can become relevant for parameters achievable in current experiments.