The Aalto group around P. Törmä has realized a Bose-Einstein condensate in plasmonic lattices! A pre-print is now available (click here to access the full text).
Bosonic condensates offer exciting prospects for studies of non-equilibrium quantum dynamics. Understanding the dynamics is particularly challenging in the sub-picosecond timescales typical for room temperature luminous driven-dissipative condensates. Here we combine a lattice of plasmonic nanoparticles with dye molecule solution at the strong coupling regime, and pump the molecules optically. The emitted light reveals three distinct regimes: one-dimensional lasing, stimulated thermalization, and two-dimensional multimode condensation. The condensate is achieved by matching the thermalization rate with the lattice size and occurs only for pump pulse durations below a critical value. Our results give a direct access to spatiotemporal control and monitoring of thermalization processes and condensate formation at sub-picosecond timescales.