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Observation of Vacuum-Induced Collective Quantum Beats

TitleObservation of Vacuum-Induced Collective Quantum Beats
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsH. Sang Han, A. Lee, K. Sinha, F. K. Fatemi, and S.. L. Rolston
JournalPhys. Rev. Lett.
Date PublishedAUG 13
Type of ArticleArticle

We demonstrate collectively enhanced vacuum-induced quantum beat dynamics from a three-level V-type atomic system. Exciting a dilute atomic gas of magneto-optically trapped Rb-85 atoms with a weak drive resonant on one of the transitions, we observe the forward-scattered field after a sudden shut-off of the laser. The subsequent radiative dynamics, measured for various optical depths of the atomic cloud, exhibits superradiant decay rates, as well as collectively enhanced quantum beats. Our work is also the first experimental illustration of quantum beats arising from atoms initially prepared in a single excited level as a result of the vacuum-induced coupling between excited levels.