Dark Solitons in BECs: The First Experiments

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


This chapter is oriented towards a review of the first two experimental studies of planar dark solitons in Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs). These experiments were direct and convincing demonstrations of the nonlinear dynamics of coherent matter-waves, and of the uses of laser light in BEC quantumstate manipulation. The experimental results were also successfully described with quantitative theoretical predictions and numerical simulations, some of which are discussed in the first portions of this chapter and Part V. The two experiments reviewed here, simultaneously and independently pursued at the University of Hannover [1] and at NIST in Gaithersburg [2], were the first to create and study planar dark solitons in BECs. Subsequent BEC dark soliton experiments at JILA [3] and Harvard University [4, 5] also demonstrated new methods for creating dark solitons in BECs. These later experiments, however, which will be mentioned briefly in this chapter, were more focused towards studies of the dynamical instabilities and decay products of planar dark solitons; a review of the JILA and Harvard experiments is given in Part V.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSpringer Series on Atomic, Optical, and Plasma Physics
Number of pages12
StatePublished - 2008

Publication series

NameSpringer Series on Atomic, Optical, and Plasma Physics
ISSN (Print)1615-5653
ISSN (Electronic)2197-6791


  • Atom Cloud
  • Dark Soliton
  • Magnetic Trap
  • Phase Jump
  • Phase Step

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Spectroscopy
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Radiation


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