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Journal Articles Optica Year : 2020

Taming the snake instabilities in a polariton superfluid

Ferdinand Claude
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Sergei V Koniakhin
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Anne Maitre
Simon Pigeon
Giovanni Lerario
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Daniil D Stupin
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Quentin Glorieux
Elisabeth Giacobino
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D. Solnyshkov
Guillaume Malpuech
Alberto Bramati


The dark solitons observed in a large variety of nonlinear media are unstable against the modulational (snake) instabilities and can break in vortex streets. This behavior has been investigated in nonlinear optical crystals and ultracold atomic gases. However, a deep characterization of this phenomenon is still missing.. In a resonantly pumped 2D polariton superfluid, we use an all-optical imprinting technique together with the bistability of the polariton system to create dark solitons in confined channels. Due to the snake instabilities, the solitons are unstable and break in arrays of vortex streets whose dynamical evolution is frozen by the pump-induced confining potential, allowing their direct observation in our system. A deep quantitative study shows that the vortex street period is proportional to the quantum fluid healing length, in agreement with the theoretical predictions. Finally, the full control achieved on the soliton patterns is exploited to give a proof of principle of an efficient, ultra-fast, analog, all-optical maze solving machine in this photonic platform.
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hal-03040835 , version 1 (04-12-2020)



Ferdinand Claude, Sergei V Koniakhin, Anne Maitre, Simon Pigeon, Giovanni Lerario, et al.. Taming the snake instabilities in a polariton superfluid. Optica, 2020, 7 (12), pp.1660. ⟨10.1364/ao.XX.XXXXXX⟩. ⟨hal-03040835⟩
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