Bragg condition for scattering into a guided optical mode

Phys. Rev. A 104, 043517 (2021)

B. Olmos, C. Liedl, I. Lesanovsky, P. Schneeweiss

We theoretically investigate light scattering from an array of atoms into the guided modes of a waveguide. We observe that the scattering of a plane-wave laser field into the waveguide modes is dramatically enhanced for angles that deviate from the geometric Bragg angle. This modified Bragg condition arises from the dispersive interactions between the guided light and the atoms. We analytically identify various parameter regimes in which the scattering rate features a qualitatively different dependence on the atom number, such as linear, quadratic, oscillatory, or constant behavior. In combination with rigorous numerical calculations, we demonstrate that these scalings are independent of a possible asymmetry of the atom-light coupling. Finally, we show that our findings are robust against voids in the atomic array, facilitating their experimental observation and potential applications. Our work sheds light on collective light scattering and the interplay between geometry and interaction effects, with implications reaching beyond the optical domain.