RP Photonics logo
RP Photonics
Encyclopedia
RP Consulting RP Software RP Encyclopedia RP Buyer's Guide
… combined with a great Buyer's Guide!
VLib part of the
Virtual
Library

Rabi Oscillations

<<<  |  >>>  |  Feedback

Buyer's Guide

Use the RP Photonics Buyer's Guide to find suppliers for photonics products! You will hardly find a more convenient resource.

Definition: oscillations of level populations (or quantum mechanical probability amplitudes) under the influence of an incident light field

German: Rabi-Oszillationen

Categories: physical foundations, quantum optics

How to cite the article; suggest additional literature

If light interacts with a two-level system (e.g. an atom or ion with a ground state and an excited state), this can lead to a periodic exchange of energy between the light field and the two-level system. Such oscillations, which are called Rabi oscillations (with reference to the Nobel Prize winner Isidor Isaac Rabi), are associated with oscillations of the quantum mechanical expectation values of level populations and photon numbers. They can be interpreted as a periodic change between absorption and stimulated emission of photons, and can be modeled using the Bloch vector formalism. A competing process, which can prevent these oscillations, is spontaneous emission.

The angular frequency of the Rabi oscillations (2π times the number of Rabi cycles per second) is called the Rabi frequency. It is proportional to the amplitude (not the optical intensity) of the light field and to the dipole moment of the level transition.

When a solid-state gain medium is optically pumped, Rabi oscillations usually cannot be observed, since the upper and lower states actually consist of Stark level manifolds (containing multiple sub-levels) and coherence is quickly destroyed by phonons. Further, inhomogeneous broadening may occur, and the optical intensities are usually not spatially uniform.

See also: quantum optics, gain media, coherence, optical pumping

How do you rate this article?

Your general impression: don't know poor satisfactory good excellent
Technical quality: don't know poor satisfactory good excellent
Usefulness: don't know poor satisfactory good excellent
Readability: don't know poor satisfactory good excellent
Comments:

Found any errors? Suggestions for improvements? Do you know a better web page on this topic?

Spam protection: (enter the value of 5 + 8 in this field!)

If you want a response, you may leave your e-mail address in the comments field, or directly send an e-mail.

If you like our website, you may also want to get our newsletters!

If you like this article, share it with your friends and colleagues, e.g. via social media:

arrow

Numerical Pulse Propagation

RP ProPulse can simulate pulse propagation in many devices:

RP ProPulse

Further features:

pulse display window

Use RP ProPulse to acquire a full understanding of your devices!

– Show all banners –

– Get your own banner! –