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Cooperative Interactions in Lattices of Atomic Dipoles

  • Nominated as an outstanding PhD thesis by Durham University, UK

  • Predicts how an array of atoms can behave like a near-perfect mirror

  • Offers an ideal introduction to the field of cooperativity

  • Provides an extensive and clearly presented theoretical framework


Part of the Springer Theses book series (Springer Theses)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvii
  2. Robert Bettles
    Pages 1-11
  3. Interacting Dipole Theory

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 13-14
    2. Robert Bettles
      Pages 15-37
    3. Robert Bettles
      Pages 39-59
    4. Robert Bettles
      Pages 61-76
  4. Cooperative Behaviour in One-Dimensional Arrays

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 77-78
    2. Robert Bettles
      Pages 79-87
    3. Robert Bettles
      Pages 89-105
  5. Cooperative Behaviour in Two-Dimensional Arrays

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 107-107
  6. Conclusions and Appendices

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 141-141
    2. Robert Bettles
      Pages 143-145
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 147-169

About this book


This thesis reports the remarkable discovery that, by arranging the dipoles in an ordered array with particular spacings, it is possible to greatly enhance the cross-section and achieve a strong light-matter coupling (>98% of the incident light). It also discusses the broad background to cooperative behaviour in atomic ensembles, and analyses in detail effects in one- and two-dimensional atomic arrays. In general, when light interacts with matter it excites electric dipoles and since the nineteenth century it has been known that if the amplitude of these induced dipoles is sufficiently large, and their distance apart is on the scale of the wavelength of the light, then their mutual interaction significantly modifies the light–matter interaction. However, it was not known how to exploit this effect to modify the light–matter interaction in a desirable way, for example in order to enhance the optical cross-section.


Superradiance and Subradiance Cooperative Atomic Lattices Atomic Superradiance Light-matter Coupling Atom-light Coupling Optical Extinction

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.JQC Durham-Newcastle, Department of PhysicsDurham UniversityDurhamUnited Kingdom

About the authors

Robert Bettles graduated from Durham University in 2012 with an MPhys in Theoretical Physics. He stayed in Durham to study his PhD in the Atomic and Molecular Physics group (AtMol), working under the supervision of Profs Charles Adams and Simon Gardiner. He is currently working as a PostDoc in the same group.  

Bibliographic information

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