Role of the stress trap in the polariton quasiequilibrium condensation in GaAs microcavities

R. Balili, B. Nelsen, D. W. Snoke, L. Pfeiffer, K. West

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Recent experiments have shown several effects indicative of Bose-Einstein condensation in polaritons in GaAs-based microcavity structures when a harmonic potential trap for the two-dimensional polaritons is created by applied stress. These effects include both real-space and momentum-space narrowing, first-order coherence, and onset of linear polarization above a particle density threshold. Similar effects have been seen in systems without traps, raising the question of how important the role of the trap is in these experiments. In this paper we present results for both trapped conditions and resonant nontrapped conditions in the same sample. We find that the results are qualitatively different, with two distinct types of transitions. At low density in the trap, the polaritons remain in the strong-coupling regime while going through the threshold for onset of coherence; at higher density, there is a different threshold behavior which occurs with weak coupling and can be identified with lasing; this transition occurs both with and without a trap.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number075319
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number7
StatePublished - Feb 23 2009
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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