Coherently driven microcavity-polaritons and the question of superfluidity

R. T. Juggins, J. Keeling, M. H. Szymańska

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Due to their driven-dissipative nature, photonic quantum fluids present new challenges in understanding superfluidity. Some associated effects have been observed, and notably the report of nearly dissipationless flow for coherently driven microcavity-polaritons was taken as a 'smoking gun' for superflow. Here we show that the superfluid response - the difference between responses to longitudinal and transverse forces - is zero for coherently driven polaritons. This is a direct consequence of the gapped excitation spectrum caused by external phase locking. Furthermore, while a normal component exists at finite pump momentum, the remainder forms a rigid state that does not respond to either longitudinal or transverse perturbations. Interestingly, the total response almost vanishes when the real part of the excitation spectrum has a linear dispersion at low frequency, characteristic of equilibrium bosonic superfluids, which was the regime investigated experimentally. These results suggest that the observed suppression of scattering should be interpreted as a sign of this new rigid state and not of a superfluid.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4062
Number of pages8
JournalNature Communications
Publication statusPublished - 3 Oct 2018


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