Breathing oscillations of a trapped impurity in a Bose gas

T. H. Johnson*, M. Bruderer, Y. Cai, S. R. Clark, W. Bao, D. Jaksch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Motivated by a recent experiment (Catani J. et al., Phys. Rev. A, 85 (2012) 023623) we study breathing oscillations in the width of a harmonically trapped impurity interacting with a separately trapped Bose gas. We provide an intuitive physical picture of such dynamics at zero temperature, using a time-dependent variational approach. The amplitudes of breathing oscillations are suppressed by self-trapping, due to interactions with the Bose gas. Further, exciting phonons in the Bose gas leads to damped oscillations and non-Markovian dynamics of the width of the impurity, the degree of which can be engineered through controllable parameters. Our results, supported by simulations, reproduce the main features of the dynamics observed by Catani et al. despite the temperature of that experiment. Moreover, we predict novel effects at lower temperatures due to self-trapping and the inhomogeneity of the trapped Bose gas.

Original languageEnglish
Article number26001
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012


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