Shell-shaped hollow Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs) exhibit behavior distinct from their filled counterparts and have recently attracted attention due to their potential realization in microgravity settings. Here we study distinct features of these hollow structures stemming from vortex physics and the presence of rotation. We focus on a vortex-antivortex pair as the simplest configuration allowed by the constraints on superfluid flow imposed by the closed-surface topology. In the two-dimensional limit of an infinitesimally thin shell BEC, we characterize the long-range attraction between the vortex-antivortex pair and find the critical rotation speed that stabilizes the pair against energetically relaxing towards self-annihilation. In the three-dimensional case, we contrast the bounds on vortex stability with those in the two-dimensional limit and the filled sphere BEC, and evaluate the critical rotation speed as a function of shell thickness. We thus demonstrate that analyzing vortex stabilization provides a nondestructive means of characterizing a hollow sphere BEC and distinguishing it from its filled counterpart.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics