We report on a combined experimental and theoretical study of polarization self-rotation in an ultracold atomic sample. In the experiments, a probe laser is tuned in the spectral vicinity of the D1 line to observe polarization self-rotation in a sample of ultracold Rb prepared in a magneto-optical trap. Systematic measurements of the rotation angle of the light-polarization ellipse as a function of laser intensity, initial ellipticity and detuning are made. The observations, in good agreement with theoretical simulations, are indicative of the presence of a residual static magnetic field, resulting in measured asymmetries in the rotation angle for right and left ellipticities. In this paper we present our detailed experimental results and analysis of the combined influences of polarization self-rotation and the Faraday effect.Comment: 9 pages, 12 figures Some figures redone for clarity, better explanation for discrepancy of model and experimental dat
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.