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Population and polarization dynamics in Landau-quantized graphene - evidence for strong Auger scattering
Winnerl, S.; Mittendorff, M.; König-Otto, J. C.; Wendler, F.; Malic, E.; Knorr, A.; Pashkin, A.; Schneider, H.; Helm, M.;
The linear band structure of graphene results in a non-equidistant spectrum of Landau levels (LLs). While transport phenomena have been widely explored after the discovery of graphene in 2004, the ultrafast optical properties of Landau-quantized graphene have been investigated only recently. Predictions of very strong nonlinearities [1], carrier multiplication [2] and Landau-level gain [3] make the system very interesting both from a fundamental and an application-oriented point of view.
Here we present experiments complemented by microscopic theory on the population and polarization dynamics in the subsystem of Landau levels -1, 0 and 1. To this end, multilayer epitaxial graphene in a magnetic field of ~4 T is excited resonantly by ps-pulses of mid-infrared radiation (photon energy 75 meV). Applying circularly polarized radiation allows one to pump and probe the energetically degenerate LL-1 → LL0 and LL0 → LL1 transitions selectively. In pump-probe experiments using all four combinations of pumping and probing with right and left circularly polarized radiation, a surprising change in sign of the measured signal (i.e. induced transmission instead of induced absorption) is observed in one of these configurations. Our analysis shows that this can be associated with a depletion of the LL0 level, even though this level is optically pumped at the same time. Very efficient Auger scattering is responsible for this depletion [4].
Furthermore, we show a very recent study of the polarization dynamics in Landau quantized graphene by means of degenerate four-wave mixing (FWM) spectroscopy. It is carried out on the same subsystem of Landau levels and utilizes similar values of magnetic field and photon energy as in the pump-probe experiments. However, the two incoming beams are linearly polarized in the FWM experiment. A rapid dephasing of the microscopic polarization on a timescale shorter than the pulse duration (4 ps) is observed and attributed to Auger scattering. The FWM signals show the expected dependences on the power of two incoming beams and on the magnetic field.
The results, both for the population as well as the polarization dynamics, depend crucially on the doping level of the sample. The graphene used in the experiments is almost intrinsic, corresponding to a full LL-1 and empty LL1. The occupation of LL0 of about 0.64 is slightly larger than the half-filling corresponding to intrinsic graphene. We will evaluate the implications of this symmetry breaking on Auger scattering and on the FWM signals. Finally, the implications of our results on the feasibility of a graphene based Landau-level laser, which is tunable by the magnetic field, will be discussed.
The sample was grown by C. Berger and W.A. de Heer. We acknowledge valuable discussions with M. Orlita, M. Potemski, Y. Wang, and A. Belyanin. We are grateful to P. Michel and the FELBE team for their dedicated support.
References
[1] X. Yao and A. Belyanin, Phys. Rev. Lett. 108, 255503 (2012).
[2] F. Wendler, A. Knorr, and E. Malic, Nature Commun. 5, 3703 (2014).
[3] F. Wendler and E. Malic, Sci. Rep. 5, 12646 (2015).
[4] M. Mittendorff, F. Wendler, E. Malic, A. Knorr, M. Orlita, M. Potemski, C.
Keywords: Carrier, dynamics, graphene, Landau quantization, Auger scattering, polarization dynamics, four-wave mixing
  • Invited lecture (Conferences)
    22nd International Conference on High Magnetic Fields in Semiconductor Physics (HMF-22), 24.-29.07.2016, Sapporo, Japan

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