Microscopic modeling of tunable graphene-based terahertz Landau-level lasers
Journal article, 2017
In the presence of strong magnetic fields the electronic band structure of graphene drastically changes. The Dirac cone collapses into discrete nonequidistant Landau levels, which can be externally tuned by changing the magnetic field. In contrast to conventional materials, specific Landau levels are selectively addressable using circularly polarized light. Exploiting these unique properties, we propose the design of a tunable laser operating in the technologically promising terahertz spectral range. To uncover the many-particle physics behind the emission of light, we perform a fully quantum mechanical investigation of the nonequilibrium dynamics of electrons, phonons, and photons in optically pumped Landau-quantized graphene embedded in a high-quality optical cavity. The microscopic insights gained allow us to predict optimal experimental conditions to realize a technologically promising terahertz laser.