Elastic Scattering Time of Ultracold Atoms in Disordered Potentials

Vincent Josse
Laboratoire Charles Fabry, Institut d'Optique, CNRS, Université Paris-Saclay, 91127 Palaiseau cedex, France
I will report on an extensive study of the elastic scattering time $\tau_s$ of matter-waves in optical disordered potentials. Using direct experimental measurements, numerical simulations and comparison with first-order Born approximation based on the knowledge of the disorder properties, we explore the behavior of time $\tau_s$ over more than three orders of magnitude, ranging from the weak to the strong scattering regime. We study in detail the location of the crossover and, as a main result, we reveal the strong influence of the disorder statistics, especially on the relevance of the widely used Ioffe-Regel-like criterion time $k l_s\sim 1$. While it is found to be relevant for Gaussian-distributed disordered potentials, we observe significant deviations for laser speckle disorders that are commonly used with ultracold atoms. Our results open the path for a better connection between experimental investigations of complex transport phenomena, such as Anderson localization, to microscopic theories.