Optical excitations of Skyrmions, knotted solitons, and defects in atoms
Abstract
Analogies between nontrivial topologies of matter and light have inspired numerous studies, including defect formation in structured light and topological photonic bandstructures. Threedimensional topological objects of localized particlelike nature attract broad interest across discipline boundaries from elementary particle physics and cosmology to condensed matter physics. Here we show how simple structured light beams can be transformed into optical excitations of atoms with considerably more complex topologies representing threedimensional particlelike Skyrmions. This construction can also be described in terms of linked Hopf maps, analogous to knotted solitons of the SkyrmeFaddeev model. We identify the transverse polarization density current as the effective magnetic gauge potential for the ChernSimons helicity term. While we prepare simpler twodimensional babySkyrmions and singular defects using the traditional Stokes vectors on the Poincaré sphere for light, particlelike topologies can only be achieved in the full optical hypersphere description that no longer discards the variation of the total electromagnetic phase of vibration.
 Publication:

arXiv eprints
 Pub Date:
 September 2021
 arXiv:
 arXiv:2109.13927
 Bibcode:
 2021arXiv210913927P
 Keywords:

 Condensed Matter  Quantum Gases;
 High Energy Physics  Theory;
 Physics  Atomic Physics;
 Physics  Optics;
 Quantum Physics
 EPrint:
 9 pages, 4 figures