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Phys Rev Lett. 2009 May 1;102(17):173903. Epub 2009 May 1.

Threshold of a random laser with cold atoms.

Author information

1
Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Madrid, CSIC, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz 3, Cantoblanco, Madrid 28049, Spain.

Abstract

We address the problem of achieving an optical random laser with a cloud of cold atoms, in which gain and scattering are provided by the same atoms. The lasing threshold can be defined using the on-resonance optical thickness b0 as a single critical parameter. We predict the threshold quantitatively, as well as power and frequency of the emitted light, using two different light transport models and the atomic polarizability of a strongly pumped two-level atom. We find a critical b0 on the order of 300, which is within reach of state-of-the-art cold-atom experiments. Interestingly, we find that random lasing can already occur in a regime of relatively low scattering.

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