Quantum-coherence-enhanced transient surface plasmon lasing

Pankaj K. Jha, Yuan Wang, Xuexin Ren, Xiang Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Quantum coherence and interference offer novel pathways to control light-matter interaction at the atomic scale, with enticing prospects in both fundamental and applied science. Here, we demonstrate coherent control over transient excitation of localized surface plasmon modes of a silver nanosphere adjacent to a quantum coherence medium composed of three-level quantum emitters, using a theoretical approach. We show that quantum interference enables more than two orders of magnitude enhancement in the surface plasmon field generated when the quantum emitters are driven coherently, in comparison to incoherent pumping. Furthermore, under optimal conditions, intense surface plasmon lasing can be induced without population inversion on the spasing transition. Our results open up the possibility of overcoming dissipative losses in plasmonic modes in the transient regime when steady-state population inversion is difficult to achieve due to fast relaxation rates and impractical pumping requirements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number054002
JournalJournal of Optics (United Kingdom)
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • lasing
  • quantum coherence
  • spaser

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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