Polarization-dependent Exciton Linewidth in Semiconductor Quantum Wells: A Consequence of Bosonic Nature of Excitons

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Physics and Astronomy


Excitons, Quantum wells, Semiconducting systems, Bosonic


The exciton coherent signal decay rate in GaAs quantum wells, as measured in four-wave mixing experiments, depends on the polarization of the excitation pulses. Using polarization-dependent two-dimensional coherent spectroscopy, we show that this behavior is due to the bosonic character of excitons. Interference between two different quantum mechanical pathways results in a smaller decay rate for cocircular and colinear polarization of the optical excitation pulses. This interference does not exist for cross-linearly polarized excitation pulses resulting in a larger decay rate. Our result shows that the bosonic nature of excitons must be considered when interpreting ultrafast spectroscopic studies of exciton dephasing in semiconductors. This behavior should be considered while interpreting results of ultrafast spectroscopy experiments involving boson-like excitations.

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