It has recently been indicated that the hexagonal manganites exhibit Higgs- and Goldstone-like phonon modes that modulate the amplitude and phase of their primary order parameter. Here, we describe a mechanism by which a silent Goldstone-like phonon mode can be coherently excited, which is based on nonlinear coupling to an infrared-active Higgs-like phonon mode. Using a combination of first-principles calculations and phenomenological modeling, we describe the coupled Higgs-Goldstone dynamics in response to the excitation with a terahertz pulse. Besides theoretically demonstrating coherent control of crystallographic Higgs and Goldstone excitations, we show that the previously inaccessible silent phonon modes can be excited coherently with this mechanism.

Last updated on 03/17/2020