Dissipative dynamics of atomic Bose-Einstein condensates at zero temperature
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In this thesis we study various dissipative processes that are associated with the flow of an atomic Bose-Einstein condensate at zero temperature. In particular, we investigate the effect of a weak correlated disorder potential on the collective dipole motion of a harmonically-confined elongated condensate. By using an extension of the Harmonic Potential Theorem, we demonstrate that the dynamics of the system can be described equivalently in terms of a disorder potential oscillating relative to a stationary condensate. This latter point of view allows the application of linear response theory to determine the drag force experienced by the condensate and to evaluate the damping rate of the centre of mass oscillation. The density response function for the elongated condensate is determined with a new local density approximation that takes into account the tight radial confinement of the atomic cloud. Our linear response theory reveals the detailed dependence of the damping rate on various system parameters. A comparison with available experimental data is only partially successful and points to the need for additional experiments. In addition to disorder induced dissipation, we also consider a variety of other problems that can be addressed by means of linear response theory. For example, we study momentum transferred to a condensate by a Bragg pulse and the energy absorption of a gas in an optical lattice that is parametrically modulated in different ways. All of these applications demonstrate the utility of linear response theory in describing the dynamics of Bose-condensed systems which are subjected to weak perturbations.