The non-equilibrium state of the high-Tc superconductor Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+δ and its ultrafast dynamics have been investigated by femtosecond time- and angle-resolved photoemission spectroscopy well below the critical temperature. We probe optically excited quasiparticles at different electron momenta along the Fermi surface and detect metastable quasiparticles near the antinode. Their decay through e-e scattering is blocked by a phase space restricted to the nodal region. The lack of momentum dependence in the decay rates is in agreement with relaxation dominated by Cooper pair recombination in a boson bottleneck limit.
The original publication is available by link DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.107.097002