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Light-matter interactions via the exact factorization approach

Abstract

The exact factorization approach, originally developed for electron-nuclear dynamics, is extended to light-matter interactions within the dipole approximation. This allows for a Schrödinger equation for the photonic wavefunction, in which the potential contains exactly the effects on the photon field of its coupling to matter. We illustrate the formalism and potential for a two-level system representing the matter, coupled to an infinite number of photon modes in the Wigner-Weisskopf approximation, as well as to a single mode with various coupling strengths. Significant differences are found with the potential used in conventional approaches, especially for strong couplings. We discuss how our exact factorization approach for light-matter interactions can be used as a guideline to develop semiclassical trajectory methods for efficient simulations of light-matter dynamics.

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Author information

Correspondence to Norah M. Hoffmann or Heiko Appel or Angel Rubio or Neepa T. Maitra.

Additional information

Contribution to the Topical Issue “Topical issue: Special issue in honor of Hardy Gross”, edited by C.A. Ullrich, F.M.S. Nogueira, A. Rubio, and M.A.L. Marques.

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Hoffmann, N.M., Appel, H., Rubio, A. et al. Light-matter interactions via the exact factorization approach. Eur. Phys. J. B 91, 180 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1140/epjb/e2018-90177-6

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