The European Physical Journal D - Atomic, Molecular, Optical and Plasma Physics

, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 285-291

First online:

Photoionization cross-sections of the first excited states of sodium and lithium in a magneto-optical trap

  • V. WippelAffiliated withInstitut für Experimentalphysik, Technische Universität Graz, Petersgasse 16, 8010 Graz, Austria
  • , C. BinderAffiliated withInstitut für Experimentalphysik, Technische Universität Graz, Petersgasse 16, 8010 Graz, Austria
  • , W. HuberAffiliated withInstitut für Experimentalphysik, Technische Universität Graz, Petersgasse 16, 8010 Graz, Austria
  • , L. WindholzAffiliated withInstitut für Experimentalphysik, Technische Universität Graz, Petersgasse 16, 8010 Graz, Austria
  • , M. AllegriniAffiliated withINFM, Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Pisa, Via F. Buonarroti 2, 56127 Pisa, Italy
  • , F. FusoAffiliated withINFM, Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Pisa, Via F. Buonarroti 2, 56127 Pisa, Italy
  • , E. ArimondoAffiliated withINFM, Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Pisa, Via F. Buonarroti 2, 56127 Pisa, Italy

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Abstract:

A two element magneto-optical trap (MOT) for Na and 7Li or 6Li is used to cool and trap each of them separately. A fraction of the cold atoms is maintained in the first 2P3/2 excited state by the cooling laser. These excited state atoms are ionized by laser light in the near-UV region, giving rise to a smaller number of trapped atoms and to different loading parameters. Photoionization cross-sections were derived out of these data. They are in reasonable agreement with data previously obtained using thermal samples and with theoretical predictions.

PACS. 32.80.Pj Optical cooling of atoms; trapping – 32.80.Fb Photoionization of atoms and ions