Solitonic vortices and the fundamental modes of the “snake instability”: Possibility of observation in the gaseous Bose-Einstein condensate

Joachim Brand and William P. Reinhardt
Phys. Rev. A 65, 043612 – Published 1 April 2002
PDFExport Citation


The connection between quantized vortices and dark solitons in a waveguidelike trap geometry is explored in the framework of the nonlinear Schrödinger equation. Variation of the transverse confinement leads from the quasi-one-dimensional (1D) regime, where solitons are stable, to 2D (or 3D) confinement, where soliton stripes are subject to a transverse modulational instability known as the “snake instability.” We present numerical evidence of a regime of intermediate confinement where solitons decay into single, deformed vortices with solitonic properties rather than vortex pairs as associated with the “snake” metaphor. Further relaxing the transverse confinement leads to the production of two and then three vortices, which correlates perfectly with a Bogoliubov stability analysis. The decay of a stationary dark soliton (or, planar node) into a single solitonic vortex is predicted to be experimentally observable in a 3D harmonically confined dilute-gas Bose-Einstein condensate.

  • Received 29 May 2001


©2002 American Physical Society

Authors & Affiliations

Joachim Brand and William P. Reinhardt

  • Department of Chemistry, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington 98195-1700

References (Subscription Required)

Click to Expand

Vol. 65, Iss. 4 — April 2002

Reuse & Permissions
Access Options

Authorization Required




Sign up to receive regular email alerts from Physical Review A

Log In



Article Lookup

Paste a citation or DOI

Enter a citation