Superfluorescence without inversion in coherently driven three-level systems
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A superfluorescence effect in a V-type medium with initial Raman inversion, driven by a strong coherent field on one of the transitions, is studied analytically and numerically. It is shown that the collective spontaneous emission evolves in the presence of a minor population of an upper state of a superfluorescent transition. In the limit of the Rabi frequency of a driving field large compared to that of a superfluorescent pulse, the system of two equations for the fields and density-matrix equations for three states of the medium is reduced to Maxwell-Bloch equations for an effective two-level system. The shape of a superfluorescent pulse is perfectly described in terms of a slowly varying envelope function (which is a solution of the Maxwell-Bloch equations), filled with fast oscillations associated with Rabi floppings on the driving transition. In the average, i.e., after integrating over a period of Rabi oscillations, the upper superfluorescent state is populated less than other states, such that the phenomenon may be called superfluorescence without inversion by analogy with lasing without inversion. 1999 The American Physical Society.